The epidemiology of firework-related injuries in the United States: 2000-2010

Injury. 2014 Nov;45(11):1704-9. doi: 10.1016/j.injury.2014.06.024. Epub 2014 Jul 8.


Introduction: The purpose of this study is to examine the epidemiology of firework-related injuries among an emergency department (ED) nationally representative population of the United States for the years 2000-2010, including whether the type of firework causing the injury is differential by patient demographics and whether the severity of injury is associated with the firework type.

Methods: The data analysed in this study was collected from the Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC's) National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS).

Results: A total of 2812 injuries represented an estimated 97,562 firework-related injuries treated in emergency departments within the United States from 2000 to 2010. The incidence generally decreased over time. With respect to age, the rate was higher for children, with the highest rates being observed for 10-19 year olds (7.28 per 100,000 persons) and 0-9 year olds (5.45 per 100,000 persons). The injury rate was nearly three times higher for males compared to the female counterparts (4.48 vs. 1.57 per 100,000 persons). Females were less likely than males to severely injure themselves with all types of fireworks besides sparklers/novelty devices (OR 1.08, CI 0.26-4.38).

Discussion: The results from this suggest that firework-related injuries have decreased by nearly 30% over the 11-year period between 2000 and 2010. Moreover, there has been a decreasing trend in the type of firework causing injury for every firework type excluding the unspecified firework type. However, adolescents of 10-19 years old had the highest rate of injury for fireworks over the 11-year period. In addition odds of injury are differential by firework type.

Conclusion: Understanding the specific types of fireworks may lead to better preventative methods and regulations. Moreover, preventative methods should be taken to reduce the rate of firework-related injuries among U.S. youths [1], and possibly more regulations and enforcement of laws geared towards prohibiting novice use of fireworks.

Keywords: Adults; Burns; Children; Epidemiology; Injury prevention; Recreational use; Wounds and injuries.

MeSH terms

  • Accident Prevention / methods*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Blast Injuries / epidemiology*
  • Blast Injuries / prevention & control
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Emergency Service, Hospital / statistics & numerical data*
  • Eye Injuries / epidemiology
  • Facial Injuries / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Hand Injuries / epidemiology*
  • Health Promotion
  • Holidays
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Population Surveillance
  • Retrospective Studies
  • United States / epidemiology