Hospital treats many pediatric fireworks burns - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Hospital treats many pediatric fireworks burns

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

Within 48 hours Baptist Memorial Hospital's emergency room in Memphis saw 20 pediatric patients; the majority of these children had injuries, especially burns, from fireworks.

Fireworks are illegal to shoot off in Shelby County but people are still shoot them off. Fourth of July may be over but many are taking the opportunity to celebrate during a long weekend.

Wednesday doctors told FOX13 News that one sparkler can heat up to 1,000 degrees; three degrees close to a blow torch's temperature.

That's enough for third-degree burns, and that is a lot of what Baptist says they've seen in the kids with firework injuries. Dr. Todd Lang, Medical Director of Emergency Services at Baptist Memphis, says commonly people receive burns on the hands and even around the eyes with fireworks.

"Even though those around us are setting off fireworks and enjoying the Fourth in many different ways, it's a time to talk as a family," says Lang, a father of three children, "We've talked in our household as we've heard noises and the dog has been scared around the house, ‘Why is it that we don't have fireworks, daddy?'"

Explaining to a young child that they cannot do fireworks because they are illegal can be tough, but Lang says, "We've talked a little bit about what laws mean. We have a six-year-old and this has been the first time that she's really asked me, ‘Why is it that we aren't doing it and why do we obey the laws but so-and-so down the street does not?'"

Firework injuries affected more than 8,500 people nationwide in 2012.

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