Fireworks accident injures man

He was firing commercial 'mortar'
Jul. 05, 2014 @ 02:51 PM

A man was injured Friday night when he was firing what fire officials describe as an illegal, fireworks shell, but because of a mishap it exploded in his face, fire and rescue officials said.

The 52-year-old man, whose name was not released Saturday, had ignited a commercial-grade, round "mortar shell" inside a launch tube about 10:40 p.m. at 1439 Hoyle Drive, off Connelly Springs Road, but the tube fell over, and as the man tried to scoop up the shell, it exploded, Capt. Jason Robbins of North Catawba Fire and Rescue Department. The name of the hospital he was taken to was not released.

Robbins says the shell cannot be legally sold in North Carolina except to people who are licensed to conduct fireworks shows.

"There's a reason certain fireworks are illegal," he said.

In general, sparklers, fountains and novelty fireworks that do not explode or are not intended to spin or to leave the ground are permitted for use by the general public in North Carolina. Anything that explodes or is projected into the air is limited to licensed professionals.