One Dead, 9 Injured in Fireworks Blast

It's not yet clear if explosion in western Michigan was part of organized Fourth of July event
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 4, 2023 11:17 AM CDT
One Dead, 9 Injured in Fireworks Blast
Stock photo.   (Getty Images/SKatzenberger)

A fireworks explosion in western Michigan killed one woman and left nine other people with injuries ranging from critical to minor, the Ottawa County Sheriff's Department said. The explosion happened Monday, but a news release from the department didn't say whether it occurred during an organized July Fourth public event, per the AP. Deputies and ambulances responded to Main Street in Park Township shortly after 11pm for a report that a firework exploded, injuring several people, the release said.

A 43-year-old woman from the city of Holland died at the scene, the sheriff's department said. Nine other people were taken to area hospitals. Several area homes and vehicles also were damaged, the release said. The explosion is under investigation. The US Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that in 2022, 10,200 people were treated at emergency rooms due to injuries from fireworks, with 11 deaths. About three-quarters of injuries happened in the period around the Fourth of July.

In Allegan County, just south of Ottawa County and about 30 minutes earlier, an errant firework exploded in or near a crowd gathered for the Allegan July 3 Jubilee show. Allegan Police Chief Jay Gibson told WWMT-TV that an errant mortar fired off during the show. There were no immediate reports of injuries, but it was enough to cause panic. "It was absolutely terrifying," Amy Cummings told MLive/Grand Rapids Press. "I woke up and can still hear the cries of the children in fear."

(More fireworks stories.)

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