A Paisley dad who is lucky to still be alive after being hit by a firework is calling for a complete ban on the sale of them to members of the public.
Johnpaul Garvie was struck on the leg by a stray pyrotechnic and spent more than a week in hospital having skin grafted onto the severely-burned area. The 40-year-old had been enjoying Hogmanay with some friends when they decided to let off a few fireworks on the green space by Findhorn Avenue in the Foxbar area to bring in the new year.
You are reading: Scots dad ‘lucky to be alive’ after firework blows up his leg
“The first one went up fine but the second one shot directly towards me,” he told the Paisley Daily Express. “I tried to get out of the road of it but it hit me in my leg and stuck there and exploded. It blew my joggers and my boxers to pieces.
“I tried to get it off with my hand, it burnt my hand a bit, but it wasn’t coming off then it exploded – it was one of the scariest things I’ve ever experienced. I’m a lucky, lucky, lucky boy.”
An ambulance was called and Johnpaul was rushed to the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley where an emergency operation was conducted on his injured leg. He would later have a skin graft, with skin being taken from his left thigh to replace what was destroyed by the firework.
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Should the sale of fireworks be banned? Share your views in the comments.
Johnpaul’s experience has left him with permanent damage to his leg and he has had to walk with the aid of crutches since the accident. It has changed his outlook on the use of fireworks for the general public and believes the sale of them should be banned and that only official displays should be allowed.
Johnpaul said: “I want to get the message out there for anybody else that’s going to use fireworks to think twice – because of the dangers that they can cause, which I did not think they could. You look at my leg and it tells you everything basically.
“Make sure you go to a display. It should be illegal to buy them from the shop. I’ve had my leg damaged but, at the end of the day, it could be a life that’s lost.”
The Scottish Government introduced a new law last October making it a criminal offence to supply fireworks to under-18s in an attempt to reduce the damage caused by them. However, Johnpaul says that anybody could become the victim of a wayward firework.
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He said: “If you buy them online, they don’t require any proof that you’re over 18, so anybody could buy them. And anyway, this was a freak accident.
“There were no kids, it was all adults, and it still happened. It doesn’t matter if you’re an adult or a kid or a pensioner or anything else – it’s going to happen.”
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