Police urge avoidance of illegal fireworksby Jon Collins, Minnesota Public Radio
A year after a local man was killed in a fireworks explosion, Moorhead police are asking people celebrating the Fourth of July to avoid illegal fireworks.
Moorhead police spokesperson Tory Jacobson says most fireworks that fly or explode are not legal in Minnesota.
"Unfortunately, every year, the emergency rooms have countless people that have been injured by the explosion," Jacobson says, "doing something unsafe or just the fact that maybe the fuse went quicker than they expected or something tipped over. There's a number of different ways that somebody can get hurt."
The Minnesota Safety Council says there were 8,800 emergency room visits because of fireworks in 2009. Most injuries occur to the hands, head or eyes.
Bills that would have allowed consumers to buy more types of fireworks failed at the state Capitol this year. But consumers still buy fireworks in neighboring states that are illegal in Minnesota.
Jacobson says there's a simple guideline. "For Minnesota, it's actually quite a conservative law: Basically if it flies or explodes, it is not legal. Items such as something that pops or snaps, doesn't fly in the air, that sparkles or lights, those are legal."