On January 1, 2019, 13-year old Aidan Arriaga decided to take the 70-sparkler challenge. It was something he saw promoted online.
To celebrate the New Year, Aidan bundled 70 sparklers together and lit them. Instead of creating a showy, harmless display, they exploded in his hand. That led to emergency treatment at University Hospital’s Trauma Center, several days in the hospital and severe burns that took a long time to heal. The Consumer Product Safety Commission says more than half of the injuries resulting from fireworks are burns, and children are the most at risk.
As Texans prepare for holiday fireworks to go on sale this Sunday, Aidan and his mother April Tejada are joining with our Trauma Center’s pediatric burn unit to warn families about the dangers to children when fireworks are misused.
Aidan and his mother are interested in sharing their story and safety message with the media and community. Dr. Christopher Crane, director of the University Hospital Trauma Center burn unit, is available to talk about the types of pediatric fireworks injuries our medical teams have treated and options that allow children to celebrate more safely.
PLEASE CONTACT US TO ARRANGE INTERVIEWS WITH AIDAN, HIS MOTHER AND DR. CRANE. THEY ARE AVAILABLE FRIDAY AFTERNOON FOR PHONE OR ZOOM VIDEO INTERVIEWS.
With many public fireworks displays cancelled this year because of COVID-19, we anticipate more families buying their own fireworks. Thank you for helping us educate our community and protect our children as we ring in the New Year.