If you were injured by fireworks, you need to know your rights. Continue reading to learn about the laws surrounding firework injuries and accidents, and whether or not you could be entitled to compensation for your losses.
Firework Injuries and Accidents
Ranging from minor to major, and even fatal, firework injuries and accidents are unfortunately a common occurrence on this annual holiday. According to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), in 2012 more than 8,700 firework-related injuries (2 of which were fatal) were reported by U.S. hospital emergency rooms. This included both firework handlers and spectators. Even more interesting, over 5,200 of the reported injuries took place between June 22 and July 22. A scarier discovery revealed that 30% of the reported injuries were minors under the age of 15, meaning children made up a considerable portion of the 2012 July 4th firework injuries. From those same reports, it was found that the most common body parts injured were the hands, fingers, legs, and head. And that the most common fireworks that caused the injuries were firecrackers, sparklers, bottle rockets, then motors.
In all states, the CPSC regulates fireworks. This includes firework devices, the composition of fireworks, and their performance requirements. Some states do not allow consumer fireworks at all. These used to be known as “C-class” fireworks, and include roman candles, sparklers, bottle rockets, motors, shells, and more. Firework laws have changed in Indiana since 2006. To learn about these changes and to read the laws surrounding firework sales and usage, view the Indiana fireworks fact-sheet.
Firework Injury Claims and Lawsuits
Firework lawsuits are not so uncommon. People have sued firework manufacturers, companies, organizations that host firework shows, and even homeowners and tenants who host private firework celebrations. Winning a settlement for a firework injury depends on several factors, making each case different. And a victim must be able to prove that the opposing party: 1) had a duty of care, 2) breached that duty of care, and 3) their injuries were a result of that breach. For this reason, personal injury claims and lawsuits are highly-sensitive and complex. So it is critical to hire a personal injury lawyer after being injured by fireworks. They can examine the circumstances surrounding your accident, and then use their knowledge and experience to determine if you are entitled to compensation.