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Dangers of fireworks outweigh entertainment value

Andrew Yianne, Capital High School
Fireworks light up the Charleston sky during the city's Fourth of July fireworks display, held July 3.
Andrew Yianne, Capital High School
Hundreds gathered to see the fireworks display, despite the threat of rain.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Fireworks can be fun with the way they light up the night sky with their colors and sounds, but mostly, they are overrated. My biggest problem with them is how do we know that the people setting off fireworks know what they are doing?I think people who wish to operate fireworks should be required to have a permit issued by their county or state showing that they have successfully completed a fireworks training course. They should have to do this not only for their sake but for the sake of others also.According to (and its sources, the American Pyrotechnics Association and the National Council on Firework Safety), for every 100 pounds of fireworks used, approximately 3.5 people are injured. Statistics also show that four people in the United States die every year because of fireworks, and 9,300 are seriously injured. Each year, 400 people lose sight because of fireworks.To me, that sure sounds like people don't know what they are doing.
I also think the age to use fireworks should be at least 15. Statistics show that 45 percent of fireworks injuries are incurred by children under the age of 14.Fireworks even affect the environment. You might think that most wildfires are caused by people setting fires or global warming, but guess what? Statistics show that fireworks cause 20,000 wildfires each year.Because of statistics like these, I do not like fireworks. I'm not saying that fireworks are always deadly or dangerous, but until I see a change in the statistics, I am going to take extra precaution when I am where fireworks are being used, and I hope you will, too.Fireworks can be fun, but I don't want to get hurt, go blind or die because of them. My sight and my life are more important to me than fireworks.
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