Fireworks Accident Leaves Texas Wary
The Fourth of July is a time for families to come together and celebrate. Many do so by going out to watch fireworks events, or perhaps even hosting their own event.
However, many Texas residents remember the tragedy that befell the state last year, where one person was killed and three others severely injured in a Fourth of July fireworks accident. Although investigators were, at first, not sure what triggered the explosion, it is still uncertain whether the ultimate cause of the accident was a defective shell exploding early, causing this sad tragedy in the city of Comanche.
Many would be surprised at how common fireworks accidents are, particularly close to home. Each July 4th, thousands of people—most of them children—are injured while using consumer fireworks. In 2011 alone, fireworks caused approximately 18,000 reported fires, and in 2013, an estimated 11,000 emergency room visits, many related to head injuries. Injury rates are most common for children up to four years of age, and include severe burns and, sometimes, even death. For the victims in Comanche, injuries ranged from first- to third-degree burns.
Arguably, these products should only be handled by trained professionals, and by encouraging the regular public, companies that manufacture fireworks for home use are, arguably, negligent. This is particularly the case if the fireworks sold are defective and hurt someone, or do not contain adequate warnings to protect the public while engaging in their intended use.
Design & Warning Defects
Firework injuries can come about from improperly using the products, or through design defects and improper warnings, which lead to injuries. Historically, some of these have included:
- Fireworks that fail to light and, upon relighting, explode;
- Fireworks that do not include instructions on how to properly use them;
- Individuals who take existing fireworks and combine them into a homemade product which then explodes improperly; and
- Abandoned fireworks and/or associated parts and products that are later found by children and cause harm.
Many have been injured as the result of misuse and defective design of fireworks. This poses significant dangers to members of the public, many of them too young to understand the potential dangers posed.
If you have been injured by a defective firework, you may be able to hold the manufacturer accountable for your injuries in a product liability lawsuit. If you have been injured at a fireworks show, those responsible for the show can be held liable for failing to properly oversee their discharge and protect attendees—in other words, failing to demonstrate the use of reasonable care.
Contact a Texas Personal Injury Attorney
The attorneys at Zehl & Associates have years of experience representing clients nationwide that were injured by dangerous defective products and/or as the result of negligence. We have helped many injured parties recover damages in connection with their injuries.
Contact Zehl & Associates’ Texas lawyers today for a free initial consultation and case evaluation. You can reach us at 1-888-603-3636, or visit either of our offices in Houston or Austin.