Diwali is round the corner and it is very important for all of us to be aware that it is meant to be a festival of joy and happiness, to be celebrated with a sense of responsibility.

As a Plastic surgeon I see at least 20 to 30 patients every year with cracker burns during the Diwali week, and out of these 2 to 3 are serious ones. Imagine,if there are approximately 200 plus plastic surgeons in NCR, it turns out to be a figure of more than 6,000 such cases in NCR itself during this week. Not to consider an equal number of patients who go to their local Physicians and Surgeons. The idea of presenting these statistics is to make the public realize the magnitude of this problem.

Now the question arises what we can do to bring down this number. And How all of us can contribute towards making this a safe Diwali. Here is a list of what to do and what not to do:-

Do’s:-

  • Light fireworks outside the house.
  • Clear the area of all flammable material before you start setting off the fireworks.
  • Keep young children away from firecrackers.
  • Ensure that there is adult supervision when kids enjoy with fireworks.
  • Use Incense sticks to light crackers – they are safer than using sparklers as they have acontained burning area.
  • Wear clothes that fit close to your body while playing with fireworks. Loose flowing clothes may not be a good idea.
  • Light a firecracker and quickly move away.
  • If a firecracker or flower pot does not burn on the first try, do not try to light it again.There is a good chance that it might burst unexpectedly. Instead, douse duds with water and then dispose them safely.
  • Put burnt fireworks inside a metal container to safely dispose them later. Do not leave them lying around. If any human or animal steps on a hot firework, it can cause severe burns.
  • Light aerial display fireworks like rockets on open grounds.
  • Keep fire extinguishers or buckets of water ready to deal with any accidental fire.
  • Make a note of emergency numbers to call in case of accidents.
  • Keep very young children and pets inside the house when lighting fireworks.

Don’ts:-

  • Do not ever try to light fireworks while holding them in your hands.
  • Do not keep burning candles or lamps near your firework store.
  • Do not try to light more than one firecracker at a time.
  • Do not point fireworks like rockets towards buildings.
  • Do not burst crackers in the middle of the road.
  • Do not carry fireworks in your pocket or inside a vehicle.
  • Do not try to make homemade firecrackers out of used fireworks. They are extremely dangerous and unpredictable.
  • Do not wear nylon or synthetic fabrics when lighting crackers. Well fitting cotton clothes are the best when you’re playing with fireworks.

Do not bend over fireworks after lighting them, to see if they have been ignited. They could go off and cause serious injury.