After this year’s Independence Day celebrations, the unfortunate truth is there are many people throughout the U.S. who have suffered some form of injury. Fireworks and similar items are frequently the cause of these injuries, often in spite of safe handling and adherence to local laws. If your injury was caused by a faulty product or the reckless actions of another, there is a good chance that you can recover damages for it.
Federal and State Laws
First off, it’s important to note that high-powered fireworks as such are not legal. Fireworks with over 50 milligrams of pyrotechnic materials are illegal under federal law, and Illinois bans most “consumer” fireworks as well. Consumer-grade fireworks would include such items as roman candles, bottle rockets, firecrackers, etc.
Under Illinois law, there are a number of pyrotechnics that are legal since they are not technically considered “consumer fireworks.” These include sparklers, snappers, glow worm pellets, smoke devices, trick matches, and similar items. The risk of injury with these devices is comparatively low, but there is still a possibility that you could be harmed using them.
Negligence and Legal Consumer Fireworks
In order to claim damages for a fireworks-related accident, there must be an instance of negligence. In a product liability claim, this would mean that the manufacturer or designer was in some way responsible for a faulty product. Perhaps it wasn’t designed properly, or maybe some devices were defective. Lack of proper quality control, testing, and other issues may result in a dangerously faulty product, thereby resulting in risk to consumers.
Other types of personal injury lawsuits may come into play as well. For instance, if a homeowner left some fireworks out on their lawn and it caused injury to someone passing by, that would constitute a premises liability case.
The odds of an injury are high, especially in cases where fireworks aren’t handled properly or where illegal devices are used. Whether a lawsuit is feasible, on the other hand, may be a bit complicated to determine, so it’s best to contact an attorney.
Public Fireworks Displays
In the case of public fireworks displays, the odds of an injury are comparatively small when they’re viewed from a safe distance. If you are injured as a result of one of these displays, a lawsuit is also less likely. Most jurisdictions have anti-tort laws that prevent most lawsuits from being brought against the city, county, or state, so you need to have a very strong case in order to press charges.
That said, it is possible if a good case can be made for wanton recklessness. Your attorney will be able to help you determine whether your claim is viable.
Seeking Damages for Firework Injuries
In the case of a serious fireworks-related injury, legal assistance is necessary to recover damages. If it resulted form the negligence of wanton actions of another, you can receive compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost earning capacity, and so forth. Hart David Carson LLP can help you with your lawsuit, so contact us today to see if you have a viable claim.