CORNING, N.Y. (18 NEWS) - In 2015, New York Giants defensive end, Jason Pierre-Paul, thought he could throw a firework faster than it would explode. His hand blew up in the split seconds after lighting it.
This happens more often than it should this time of year. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission advises people to leave these rockets to firework professionals.
The simple mistake of wrong distance, aim or even holding the rockets, can cause extreme injuries and even death.
Nationwide, about 250 people, on average, go to the emergency room everyday with firework-related injuries in the month around July 4th.
The CPSC advises for the public to stick with legal, consumer-grade fireworks. This is not only for safety precautions, but for legal reasons too.
Use and sale of illegal fireworks can result in misdemeanors.
"So some of the criminal penalties for a misdemeanor would be up to a year in jail and potentially hundreds of dollars of fines," Michael Brown, Associate Attorney at Ziff Law Firm, said.
Along with keeping the law in mind, children should also be a priority.
Sparklers can be popular among those who avoid rockets. However, the sparklers tend to burn as hot, or even hotter, than a blow torch.
"Be safe, be smart. If you're going to be a kid playing with fireworks, make sure an adult is present," Matthew Bulkley, a volunteer firefighter at North Corning Fire Department, said. "There's way too many incidents where kids have burn marks on their bodies because of sparklers. Have something like a bucket of water there, just in case."
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