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According to a National Fire Protection Association report, in 2010 alone, an estimated 15,500 reported fires were started by fireworks and 8,600 fireworks-related injuries were treated in U.S. hospital emergency rooms.
The report also shows that there are more fires on a typical Fourth of July than any other day of the year. Fireworks account for two out of five of those fires, more than any other cause of fires.
The Fireworks report outlines specific statistics regarding how the use of consumer fireworks relates to fire danger including:
- In 2010, fireworks caused an estimated 15,500 reported fires, including 1,100 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires, and 14,100 outside and other fires.
- These fires resulted in an estimated eight reported deaths, 60 civilian injuries and $36 million in direct property damage.
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Sadly but perhaps not unpredictably, a home right here on Chicago's Southwest Side---in the Scottsdale neighborhood at 7855 South Kedvale, became a statistic on Wednesday, July 4 when a home fireworks display went wrong.
The fire was called in at 9:19 p.m. According to a Chicago Fire Department spokesman, CFD Engine 15, Engine 64, Truck 31 and Truck 59 responded to extinguish the fire and check for any unexploded fireworks. Also responding were Battalion Chief 20 and an investigations car. No ambulances were requested. From what we have heard, there were no serious injuries---although there certainly could have been, had things gotten worse.
In the end, a garage burned down.
Today a large Dumpster was sitting in the driveway, filled with the charred ruins of the garage.
And here are a few minutes of the explosions and fire, captured on home video by a neighbor and posted to YouTube:
Best to leave fireworks to licensed professionals.
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