Many Baltimore residents recently celebrated another fun and eventful Fourth of July holiday. For others, however, the event may not have been as fortunate, as reports of fireworks injuries have been made from across the state and the country.
Tragically, these incidents are nothing new. According to the National Fire Protection Association, emergency rooms around the country treated about 11,400 people for injuries related to fireworks in 2013. More than half of those injuries were suffered in extremities, while another 38 percent of the injuries were head injuries.
Even more troubling is those who are often the victims of fireworks injuries. Children under the age of 4 years old are at the highest risk of suffering an injury because of fireworks. The group with the next highest risk is children between the ages of 10 and 14 years old. Accordingly, fireworks injuries are unique in their potential to result in child injury.
While many injuries may be self-inflicted, this is not always the case, as some injuries are suffered through another person's negligence. An innocent bystander can suffer serious and permanent injury when another individual handling the fireworks does not exercise the care that is required for these dangerous items.
In those cases when another person is at fault for the injury, the injured person may have a valid cause of action for negligence. Through the negligence action, the injured child or adult can hold those responsible who caused the accident, and recover compensation for their injuries that were caused by the fireworks. While the circumstances of the case would differ from other negligence cases like car accidents, the basic legal showing involved in the negligence claim would be fairly similar, as well as the person's ability to recover damages for the injuries.
Source: National Fire Protection Association, "Fireworks," accessed on July 11, 2015