Last year's New Year celebrations resulted in 12 eye injuries requiring hospital treatment. Five of these were sustained by people only watching the fireworks. This was so far the lowest number of injuries since the change in legislation concerning fireworks entered into force in 2010.
“Any serious injuries would have been totally avoided if both the people who set off the fireworks and people watching them had used safety goggles. Safety goggles are compulsory for those who set off fireworks and recommended for everyone watching fireworks outdoors,” says Senior Officer Mikko Ojala of Tukes.
Two years ago, at the turn of the year 2015–2016, there we 29 eye injuries, and 17 in 2014–2015.
Support the batteries and other fireworks carefully
Fireworks are explosives that always include some risk. To minimise these risks, you should not only wear safety goggles but also follow the fireworks’ safety instructions and the safety distances indicated. You should choose a suitable place carefully and support the fireworks properly.
“Batteries should be supported with stones, sand or snow, and you should use a fireworks launcher,” says Ojala.
Fireworks only for adults
Last year half, or 6, of the people with eye injuries were under the age of 18.
It is forbidden to sell or hand over fireworks to anyone under 18. Sellers check the age of people buying fireworks, and it is the parents’ responsibility to ensure that fireworks do not end up in the hands of underage children at any stage.
Setting off fireworks when intoxicated is also forbidden.
Fireworks may be set off between 6 pm on 31 December and 2 pm on 1 January.
Fireworks may also be forbidden in certain urban areas. For more information, please check the websites of municipalities and rescue departments.
Senior Officer Mikko Ojala, tel. +358 29 5052 427
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