As Oahu rings in the new year with illegal fireworks, first responders had a busy night
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - With the night sky lit up with fireworks to ring in 2022 on Oahu, many continued to ignore a years-old aerial fireworks ban.
This resulted in some serious injuries, making it a busy night for first responders.
Honolulu Emergency Medical Services said between 7 p.m. on New Year’s Eve to 7 a.m. on New Year’s Day, paramedics responded to and treated 11 people with injuries from fireworks.
During the daytime on Friday, EMS said two people were also treated for serious firework-related injuries.
Of those injured, one was a child and the rest were adults. Officials said the majority of injuries occurred in west Oahu.
First responders said firework injuries included patients who lost fingers and parts of their hand while holding explosive-type fireworks. EMS said it saw patients with burns and those struck in the face, neck and chest with firework projectiles and shrapnel.
Officials said nearly all of the injuries were serious or critical, and most were transported to the Queen’s Medical Center Trauma Center or the Straub Burn Center.
“I’ve been working 20 years. It was probably the biggest New Year’s that I’ve seen,” said EMS District 2 Chief Stacy Yoshikawa.
Officials said revelers who illegally blocked lanes on H-1 Freeway to watch fireworks in west Oahu also prolonged response times with ambulances having to take side streets to get those in need.
During the same time period a year ago, Honolulu EMS responded to six firework injuries.
EMS said emergency rooms walk-ins for less serious burns and injuries were not included in their data.
Meanwhile, the Honolulu Fire Department responded to 11 fireworks-related incidents.
- Two structure fires
- Three rubbish fires
- Six medical injuries
This story will be updated.
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