Use of Consumer Fireworks Increases Risk of Fire and Injury

June 29, 2012
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By The National Fire Protection Association

Just in time for Fourth of July, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) released its fireworks report that explores fire and injury dangers related to consumer fireworks.

The report shows that in 2010 alone, an estimated 15,500 reported fires were started by fireworks and 8,600 fireworks-related injuries were treated in U.S. hospital emergency rooms.  It also shows that there are more fires on a typical Fourth of July than any other day of the year. Fireworks account for two out of five of those fires, more than any other cause of fires.

“Thousands of people are treated in U.S. emergency rooms each year because of incidents involving consumer fireworks and many times these injuries are extremely painful and require long-term recovery – using consumer fireworks is simply not worth the risk,” said James Shannon, president of NFPA. “We encourage families to enjoy public displays of fireworks conducted by trained professionals.”

The fireworks report outlines specific statistics regarding how the use of consumer fireworks relates to fire danger including:

In 2010, fireworks caused an estimated 15,500 reported fires, including 1,100 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires, and 14,100 outside and other fires. These fires resulted in an estimated eight reported deaths, 60 civilian injuries and $36 million in direct property damage.

The report demonstrates using consumer fireworks heightens the risk of injury and even death. The study showed:

The risk of fireworks injury was highest for children ages 5-14 with more than twice the risk for the general population.

The Spirit of Shrewsbury

Sparklers and novelties alone accounted for 38 percent of the 8,600 emergency room fireworks injuries in 2010.

With the fireworks report’s findings in mind, NFPA along with the American Academy of Pediatrics, founded the Alliance to Stop Consumer Fireworks to warn individuals about the dangers of consumer fireworks. The alliance is a group of health and safety organizations that urges the public to avoid the use of consumer fireworks and instead, to enjoy displays of fireworks conducted by trained professionals.

To view the full fireworks report and for more information about NFPA and firework safety, visit

The National Fire Protection Association, an international organization dealing with fire, electrical, building and life safety, the American Academy of Pediatrics and other organizations founded the Alliance to Stop Consumer Fireworks to warn individuals about the dangers of consumer fireworks.

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