Fireworks death highlights dangers of improper use - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Fireworks death highlights dangers of improper use

Because of the Internet, it isn't hard to find out how to make a sparkler bomb or other dangerous devices, but often those websites don't explain the dangers of the device. Because of the Internet, it isn't hard to find out how to make a sparkler bomb or other dangerous devices, but often those websites don't explain the dangers of the device.

A 4th of July celebration turned deadly in Buckner, Arkansas. 17-year-old Justin Smith died after he and a friend made a sparkler bomb.

"You have individuals who are taking one sparkler and putting it around multiple sparklers, and you have this one sparkler that gets up to about 3,000 degrees and that heat builds up around these other sparklers, and then it expands and explodes," said SFD Bomb Technician, Fred Sanders.

Smith and his friend put a bucket over the homemade explosive, lit it, and couldn't get away fast enough before it exploded.

"It's terrible anytime someone dies, let alone someone of this age," said Lafayette Count Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy, Pete Richardson.

Smith's friend survived the explosion, but was treated for injuries at Magnolia Hospital.

Investigators say the sparkler bomb that killed Smith had about 300 sparklers in it. The sparkler box has a warning label that says not to hold or light more than one sparkler at a time.

"Of course if you've got more sparklers around more metal sticks or wood sticks or whatever they're using, you're going to have more shrapnel. That's more flying debris which can cause more damage and more harm," said Sanders.

Sanders added that because of the Internet, it isn't hard to find out how to make a sparkler bomb or other dangerous devices, but often those websites don't explain the dangers of the device.

Copyright 2012 KSLA. All rights reserved.

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