Most people in Southern California love this time of year. With the sun shining, barbeques, drinks flowing and fireworks lighting up the night there are hundreds of injuries that are likely to turn your holiday weekend into a nightmare. This July fourth take the steps you need to avoid personal injury and damages that may lead to trial.
Fireworks are the main attraction of many celebrations around the Los Angeles County area. Although most people realize they are illegal in our community, they still pose a threat to injury in the loss of fingers, disfigurement, blindness and death in rare instances. According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, more than two-thirds of all fireworks injuries occur on Independence Day. In 2011, the CDC reported about 7,000 people were treated for firework related injuries, which occur the highest among children ages 10-14 years old.
It is honorable to be safe than sorry, so always prepare your holiday party for safety to prevent injury. Fireworks are safe if common sense safety rules are followed. If you venture to communities where lighting fireworks is permitted, consider the following to ensure everyone is safe:
Read instructions carefully before lighting fireworks.
Wear proper clothing to prevent burns on the feet, arms, eyes and legs (ear protection if necessary).
Keep fireworks away from children under 5 years old.
Do not light fireworks in crowded areas and do not throw towards people, objects or property.
Do not purchase illegal fireworks.
Fourth of July is a holiday weekend this year, which means alcoholic beverages are bound to be present at family gatherings. Law enforcement is likely to increase throughout LA County since there was a 43 percent increase in arrests last year for driving impaired. Approximately 490 drivers were arrested in 2013 for suspicion of DUI, while only 340 were reported the year before. Always designate a driver or contact a local cab driver if you consume alcohol to avoid the risk of harm to you or loved ones. Drunk drivers are both criminally and civilly responsible for accidents which allow compensation for medical expenses and other damages that occur in victims.
Pyrotechnics are not permitted in Los Angeles, but that does not stop others in LA County from taking them to our community, which increases the risk of property damage. Fireworks can travel a great distance after being set off. A lawsuit concerning firework related property damage usually involves claims for trespassing after a firework item has entered or caused damage to a person’s property. In cases involving fireworks entering a person’s property without permission is liable for trespassing and found negligent. Not only are fireworks dangerous if handled without care, sometimes they are improperly made and defective – which can lead to serious personal injuries and property damage.
With these helpful tips you can celebrate the Fourth of July safely and responsibly that will help reduce the danger of personal injuries and damages. If you or a loved one becomes injured on Independence Day then you may be entitled to compensation after an accident. A great personal injury attorney will help guide you through the steps of taking legal action from someone’s negligence.
(Photo courtesy of Pyro Safety)