Fireworks Explode Into Crowd, Injuring 28
20 hospitalized after Independence Day event near LA
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Jul 5, 2013 3:13 AM CDT
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(Newser) – A crowd gathered for Fourth of July fireworks saw celebration turn to disaster as an explosion hurt 28 people. Twenty of those were hospitalized, four with "moderate to severe injuries," NBC Los Angeles reports. Their wounds, however, aren't life-threatening, the AP notes. The incident occurred in Simi Valley, Calif., near Los Angeles, during an event that had been expected to draw between 8,000 and 10,000 people. After just a few minutes of fireworks, "everything exploded and parts came flying everywhere," a witness says. "People were running everywhere."

Authorities say the explosion was the result of a wooden platform that fell over, taking fireworks with it, the AP reports. "For some unknown reasons the structure that holds these ordinances collapsed," says a police commander. "The ones that had actually ignited ... were going directly into the crowd." A Myrtle Beach, SC, fireworks show also resulted in injury: A shell went off early, injuring a worker and putting a hole in a pier.

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Jul 5, 2013 8:43 PM CDT
In my town, we had a couple dozen volunteers keeping people out of a 1 block radius of the massive array of launchers. It was roped off and people stood watch. But every year someone wants to try to bust the red zone and get closer so their kids can get a better look. There comes a point where being too close makes it harder to see the planned show. Some of those smiley faces that shoot off require you to be about six blocks away to see in full effect. But the volunteers worked tirelessly to keep the linebusters out.
Jul 5, 2013 5:35 AM CDT
Drunks shouldn't play with matches.
Jul 5, 2013 4:12 AM CDT
Maybe we should just all safely stay indoors and light a flameless candle in a cupboard and quietly go "Yay".