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Valley ERs prepping for Fourth of July injuries

PHOENIX — Emergency room doctors throughout the Valley are prepared for a busy Fourth of July weekend.

Fireworks should be the only things blowing up this weekend but oftentimes doctors deal with gruesome burn injuries from fireworks that can lead to patients losing limbs.

Kevin Haselhorst, emergency medicine physician with Abrazo Health’s Arrowhead and West Valley hospitals, said Independence Day is a fun and important holiday but it is hard to be independent when you’re missing a limb.

“Primarily I see the hand injuries, burn injuries, and some facial injuries,” he said. “Eye injuries in particular with firecracker burns.”

Haselhorst said firework injuries are very frequent around the Fourth of July.

“A lot of times people get into the moment and they don’t anticipate that it is going to result in an accident,” he said.

There are, however, a few things Haselhorst suggests Valley residents do during the holiday weekend to keep themselves out of the emergency room.

“Flammable materials can cause accidents but that’s not to say you couldn’t plan ahead for the accident to happen and to have a designated [emergency] plan,” he said.

Haselhorst said that plan should include keeping a bucket of ice water ready in case of a burn injury and designating a driver in case a trip to the emergency room is needed.