Light crackers and fireworks with care: Accident Service head
Health officials warn that the number of firecracker injuries would be high during the Sinhala and Tamil New Year season if low quality fire crackers are purchased or handled by children or persons after liquor who do not know to light them in safe places.
National Hospital Accident Services Director Dr. Anil Jasinghe said that although there has been a slight decrease with around 500 cases last year, about 700 cases have been reported for the previous five years.
“During this season most of the injuries are reported from the southern part of the country. The only advice we can give people is not to light crackers in an anti-social manner,” he said.
He added that it is the right time for local authorities to arrange public fireworks displays, as is done by many countries, where less incidents are reported.
“This is a seasonal market and youngsters tend to go for more dangerous explosives. We advise the public to buy fire crackers from known vendors rather than from the pavement,” he said. “We advise that crackers should not be lighted by children but only by adults. Crackers should be kept away from adults who are under the influence of alcohol as they may throw crackers into crowds causing injuries,” he said.
Covering crackers with coconut shells and tins after they are lit, should be avoided as sometimes they may blow up creating some harm. Sending up sky rockets too should be avoided in towns as there are high rise buildings which may be hit leading to fires,” he said.