July fourth health hazards

July 4th e.r.
Posted at 5:34 PM, Jul 03, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-03 17:34:00-04

Fireworks, water sports and driving are just a few activities that can send you to the E.R. or an urgent care center this holiday weekend.

That's the bad news, the good news is with smart choices and some pre-planning you don't have to be one of the 4th of July casualties.

Fireworks send more than 9 thousand people to the emergency room each year with burn related injuries.

"I've seen fingers lost, I've seen eyes lost, I saw teeth lost, they tried to put a firecracker in their mouth and it exploded, so people do some strange things especially this weekend when there's a lot of alcohol sales." Said Captain Jerry Jensen of the Sarasota County Fire Department.

Seventy percent of fireworks related injuries happen between June 20th and July 20th said Captain Jensen. "Even sparklers can cause injury." Captain Jensen explained. "So keep a bucket of water close drop it in and leave it there."

When it comes to holiday food, John Mason, M.D., of Sarasota Medical Center said safe handling practice will keep you safe.

"E coli, with undercooked hamburger, salmonella with chicken products and warmed dairy products can cause health problems." Said Dr, Mason. He suggested to use rubber gloves to protect from bacteria, and, cook meats well." Dr. Mason added, "Under-cooking is what's going to get you into trouble, and if you don't know how long the dairy products have been sitting out, then leave them alone."

Here on the Suncoast there are many free venues to celebrate July 4th fireworks in a controlled environment with professionals handling the explosives. And remember, if it flies through the air, explodes and goes boom - it is illegal in the state of Florida.

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