When one thinks about injuries from fireworks, thoughts immediately go to children - and rightfully so.
Youngsters fascinated by the colors and brightness of fireworks and sparklers might not appreciate the dangers the pyrotechnics pose. These creations - even sparklers - burn at extremely high temperatures capable of causing severe burns, and even small explosives pack enough punch to cause injury if handled improperly.
Given all of this, few can dispute that fireworks in the hands of children can be a danger.
So it might come as a surprise that the majority of fireworks injuries last year were suffered not by children but by adults, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
The commission looked at fireworks injuries from June 17 to July 17 last year and found the group suffering the biggest percentage of injuries included those ages 25 to 44. That age bracket accounted for 40 percent of the total injuries. Those ages 45 to 64 accounted for 14 percent of the injuries, the agency's website states.
This means more than half of the injuries were incurred by adults, who one typically would think should be able to appreciate the dangers that fireworks pose. The statistics say, however, that significant numbers of adults don't.
Of course, teenagers and younger children also suffer injuries from fireworks. One-fifth of injuries occurred to those between the ages of 10 and 19. Sixteen percent of injuries happened to those age 9 and younger.
The commission said an average of 200 people a day visit emergency rooms in the month surrounding the Fourth of July because of fireworks injuries. More than half of the injuries are burns, with hands and fingers the most common body parts hurt.
With the Fourth of July sitting in the middle of the week, it's likely that central Pennsylvania is in for an extended fireworks season.
Stores have been selling various legal fireworks for weeks and stands are popping up everywhere offering similar wares.
This means there will be lots of bangs, pops and fiery displays in the days ahead. We urge those buying fireworks to handle them with care and follow all safety procedures.
We don't want to see a burn or other serious injury ruin your Independence Day fun.