As we enter the height of summer, all of us at Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, wish you a wonderful Independence Day.
The weather is beautiful and the beaches and waterways are flourishing. Our Fort Myers car accident lawyers remind you to plan your trip and drive safely, always designate a driver and avoid distraction. Your number one injury risk this summer is being involved in a traffic collision. Boating and water safety should also be high on your list of concerns if you plan to be on the water.
But each year fireworks hit the night sky to signal the start of the peak summer season. And each year injuries occur, both at sanctioned municipal or corporate shows, or as a result of using backyard fireworks. These incidents are not rare. In fact, they have grown increasingly common amid the nation’s lax enforcement attitude toward fireworks sales. And the injuries typically result in permanent scarring or lasting disability, with severe burns, facial disfigurement, loss of eyesight and loss of fingers being among the most common.
The Insurance Journal reports nearly 13,000 serious firework injuries occur each year in the United States as fireworks sales approach $1 billion amid relaxed laws and enforcement. At least 8 people a year die as result of fireworks injuries. Two-thirds of accidents occur between mid June and mid July.
In Florida, F.S. Chapter 791 governs the sale of fireworks. While the law allows for the sale of fireworks, it prohibits consumer use of anything that explodes or emits sparks, except by permitted groups and organizations that seek advanced permission. Roadside stands and temporary fireworks emporiums that spring up each summer use the law to sell many fireworks that are not legal for consumers to detonate in Florida.
Effectively, Florida law outlaws all but the sparklers, smoke bombs, and other minor novelty items of the type sold at Publix or Walmart.