Members of the group are:
Joseph Wright, MD, MPH, medical director for Advocacy and Community Affairs at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, DC, representing the American Academy of Pediatrics, discusses pediatric injuries from consumer fireworks
News reporters, among other guests, at the press conference, preparing their stories.
Fireworks can result in scars and disfigurement that can last a lifetime, the group said. Sparklers, for example, can burn up to more than 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
Injuries and deaths: There were an estimated 8,800 people injured by fireworks who were treated in a hospital emergency department in 2002. In the same year, four people died, according to U.S. death certificate records. Nearly two-thirds of fireworks injuries were burns, according to a newly-released report from NFPA. More than one-third of fireworks injuries were to the head, with one-fifth of the total involving the eye. Half of all injuries were to the extremities.
Gender and ages: Males accounted for 71 percent of the fireworks injuries. The female injury rate was higher than the male rate for adults, ages 45 or older. Highest risk of fireworks injuries was to teens and preteens. Children ages 10-14 had a fireworks injury rate three times the general population, the rate for children five to nine was more than twice as high as average, and the rate for teens 15-19 was twice that of the population as a whole.
Fires: In 1999, the latest year for which there are statistics, an estimated 24,200 reported fires were started by fireworks. Most of these fires were outdoor brush or refuse fires, but most of the loss occurred in fires with structures involved. These fires can start with outdoor use of fireworks, as when a bottle rocket, launched outside, lands on a roof or other location not easily accessed, where it can ignite combustibles before anyone can retrieve it.
Cost of fires: $17.2 million in property damage for 1999.
States that ban all fireworks: At present, only seven states ban all consumer fireworks. They are: Arizona, Delaware, Georgia, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island. Such bans have been linked to significantly lower rates of fireworks-related injuries and fires.Member organizations
AAP: The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 60,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults.
ABA: The American Burn Association and its members dedicate their efforts and resources to promoting and supporting burn-related research, education, care, rehabilitation, and prevention. The ABA has more than 3,500 members in the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Members include physicians, nurses, occupational and physical therapists, researchers, social workers, firefighters, and hospitals with burn centers. Our multidisciplinary membership enhances our ability to work toward common goals with other organizations on educational/prevention programs.
ACEP: The American College of Emergency Physicians is a national medical specialty society representing emergency medicine with more than 23,000 members. ACEP is committed to improving the quality of emergency care through continuing education, research and public education.
IAFC: The International Association of Fire Chiefs is the professional association for senior fire and emergency service leaders around the world, with a membership of more than 12,000 fire chiefs and associated officials. A truly international organization, the IAFC counts among its members representatives from more than 30 foreign countries including Japan, Canada, Mexico, Australia and Ghana.
IAFF: The International Association of Fire Fighters is the AFL-CIO, CLC affiliated labor union representing more than 250,000 professional fire fighters and emergency medical personnel in the United States and Canada. The IAFF is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and operates a Canadian national office in Ottawa. With more than 2,700 affiliates, the union fights for the rights, health and safety of the vast majority of full-time, paid fire fighters in the two countries. Its members protect more than 85 percent of the lives and property, and are the largest providers of pre-hospital emergency medical care in the U.S.
IFMA: The mission of the International Fire Marshals Association (IFMA) is to aid in the preservation of life and property by advocating, promoting and providing leadership in the prevention or mitigation of fire, explosions and other related hazardous conditions. Established in 1906, as the Fire Marshals Association of North America, IFMA currently has more than 1,800 members worldwide.
NASFM: The National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM) represents the most senior fire official of each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. NASFM's mission is to protect human life, property and the environment from fire and to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of State Fire Marshals' operations.
NFPA: NFPA has been a worldwide leader in providing fire, electrical, building, and life safety to the public since 1896. The mission of the international nonprofit organization is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating scientifically-based consensus codes and standards, research, training and education.
Contact: Margie Coloian, Public Affairs Office: +1 617 984-7275