New Year Fireworks-Related Injuries Remain High
According to the Injury Prevention and Control Program (IPCP) of the Hawaii State Department of Health, 94 people were treated at Hawaii emergency departments (EDs) for fireworks-related injuries during this New Year period. Almost all patients were taken to the hospital via private transport and nearly all who were treated were discharged. Only 2 patients required hospitalization.
The number of injuries increased by 9% compared to last New Year's period (86 injuries), and the current total of 94 injuries is the 2nd highest total in the 7 years of gathering this information. The majority of injuries occurred on Oahu (68, or 72% of the total). The remaining 26 injuries were reported from Neighbor Islands, which exceeds any previous total. Thirteen of those injuries occurred on Maui, approximately double the average number of 7 injuries for that island in previous years.
Most (91%) of the injuries were burns, with hands and fingers being the most commonly affected parts of the body. The age of the patients ranged from 2 to 54 years, but more than half (54 of 92, or 59%) were 16 years or younger. Six were between the ages of 2 and 4 years, 24 were between 5 and 9 years, and 24 were 10 to 16 year-olds. Only 9 patients (10%) were older than 30 years of age (age was not known for 2 patients).
Fireworks-related injuries continue to be a significant cause of ED-treated trauma around the New Year period, particularly among young children. Among children aged 2 through 14 years, there were more injuries (45) from fireworks during this 2-day period, than in an average month from car crashes (42), assaults (21), poisonings (13), or pedestrian crashes (9).