The state of Alabama has relatively lax laws regarding the use of fireworks, but that doesn’t mean that manufacturers or consumers can be lax when it comes to handling explosive products.
There is no denying the fact that there is an inherent risk in handling fireworks, and warning labels are placed on the packaging so consumers are aware of the danger. But sometimes a user does everything right and still something goes wrong. Or the person responsible for the fireworks is negligent in their handling and causes serious damage to an innocent party or bystanders. In either situation, the victim had no way of anticipating that they would get injured as a result of handling fireworks or watching them go off. It’s a situation where a serious personal injury claim is most likely to be made.
When Fireworks Go Wrong
Fireworks are almost never safe. They’re essentially colored gunpowder that explodes into a unique pattern after launch. However, man has been manufacturing and handling them for centuries and their risk has been accepted as a part of life. That is not to say that fireworks can be handled with a laissez faire approach. Rather, it’s important to exercise caution at all times and back away once the fuse is lit.
But accidents still happen despite the fact fireworks are known to be dangerous as evidenced by an explosion in early 2015 at Ultratech Special Effects fireworks manufacturing facility in Owens Cross Roads, Alabama; just 15 miles southeast of Huntsville. The incident resulted in two deaths from the explosion, but it’s not the first time this has happened at the facility. There have been four prior explosions at this factory since 1999. It is a poor track record, and the factory was fined by OSHA for failing to properly train employees, lack of emergency plan and improper handling of hazardous materials. The lack of safety checks and oversight directly led to the death of people who had no way of knowing they were purposely put at risk by their employer.
On the consumer side, those who purchase fireworks have a direct responsibility for their proper handling. While state law does not have a provision for the security and handling of fireworks, those who use fireworks need to ensure that they use the fireworks correctly and keep them away from those who should not be using them. Firework spectators are there for entertainment and don’t have an expectation of anything going wrong that would cause them harm.
In 2004, a group of boys found an unsupervised pile of fireworks consisting of artillery shells, bottle rockets, sparklers, M-80s and more. The boys took the fireworks and lit them off while no adults were around to supervise. One boy aimed a bottle rocket at the face of another boy who had bent over to tie a shoelace. The end result was the immediate and total loss of vision in one eye on the part of the victim. His life was forever altered as a result of poor judgment, and the family needed to retain an Alabama personal injury attorney to file a personal injury claim and seek justice.
Holding Parties Responsible
Those who have been seriously injured or lost a loved one as the result of poor handling of fireworks can seek legal action to resolve the issue. Sometimes the police get involved, but not always, and it may be that talking to a local injury or product liability attorney becomes necessary. Everyone has the right to be free from harm at the hands of another. But when negligence results in serious injuries, such as with a firework related incident, the victim or their loved ones have the right to sue to be made whole again.
If you have been serious injured due to the negligence of another individual or from a defective or mislabeled product and live in Alabama, contact Foley injury lawyer, Noel B. Leonard today. Noel represents serious accident victims in Baldwin, Escambia and Mobile Counties everyday and has the experience and insight to help review your case and provide advice as to next best steps in filing your personal injury claim. Call 251-732-2701 today or click to schedule a consultation today.