Firework Safety to Stay Away from the Hospital

Jul 1, 2013

Fireworks are illegal in the city of Tulsa. But for those of you leaving the city limits for the Fourth of July, OSU Family Medicine physician Regina Lewis shares the do's and don’ts of burn injuries.

“What you don’t want to do is immediately remove that article of clothing because you can actually remove some of the skin with that as well," says Lewis. "If that is to happen, you want to put that person in a shower, cold water, and kind of take that article of clothing off slowly.”

Lewis says do not put butter, Vaseline, or anything similar that will trap the heat in when treating burn injuries. Running cool water to cool the burn, and release the heat, is the best option. Burns on the face and eyes need to be seen immediately by someone at urgent care.

Lewis also says it all comes down to the person's judgment, and how he/she is handling the fireworks. And it is important not to combine fireworks, or shoot them off in your hands. 

“Seeing fireworks backfire – who was around? Or was there a little kid right there who didn’t get away fast enough or it just went the wrong direction. Especially in neighborhoods, where you have other homes, cars, when you have tons of people in one place and one of those, the wind blows it the wrong way, now you’re increasing the risk,” says Lewis.

Lewis says there is an increase of ER visits during this holiday, and many times it involves alcohol. She says since the fireworks can be unpredictable, drinking while setting them off may not be a good combination because it affects the state of mind and judgement.

Although fireworks are illegal in the city of Tulsa, safety is important for those of you leaving the city limits for the holiday.