Thursday, October 30, 2008

Diwali disasters: 45 hurt in cracker chaos

Diwali disasters: 45 hurt in cracker chaos

Melwen was injured while bursting crakers. He is being treated at Minto Hospital in Bangalore on Tuesday
Express News Service
First Published : 29 Oct 2008 04:30:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 29 Oct 2008 02:14:06 PM IST

BANGALORE: Many may have had a blast on the festival of lights, but for some others, it turned to be a nightmare. As many as 45 cracker-related injury cases have been reported across the city hospitals over Monday and Tuesday.

Twelve-year-old Chetana, sustained eye injury on Monday when she played with the chemicals taken out from spent firecrackers.

She has been admitted at the Shekar Nethralaya. The hospital also received six other cracker-related injury cases.

The Minto Opthalmic Hospital registered nine cases on Monday of which one is being treated as an in-patient. Referring to the case, RMO Dr Chandraprabha said “sevenyear- old Sriraksha’s injuries are severe”.

Most of the patients admitted at the Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital have suffered minor injuries. Speaking to The Express, Dr Rajana said: “Some children have suffered corneal burns. These patients’ vision will be restored in two or three days and they won’t need any surgical intervention.” Sixteen such cases, mostly of children below 10 years of age, were treated at the Narayana Netralaya. Complaints related to severe injury to the eye balls, burning of eye lashes, and smoke irritation were among them.

Most of the injuries have been attributed to faulty crackers - crackling sparklers, flower pots, rockets and bombs. Doctors, however, said that parental neglect while children played with crackers cannot be ruled out.

Dr Rohit Shetty from Narayana Nethralaya said: “Among the major injured is fourand- a-half-year old Gagan from Dasarahalli.

While bursting the cracker, his cornea got injured resulting in the blurring of his vision.” Attributing it to the negligence of parents, Dr Shetty added: “Many children light firecrackers unsupervised and they have a tendency to get close to the cracker, trying repeatedly to light some of the malfunctioning ones. These may burst suddenly into the face. Seven-year-old Anand’s vision was blurred after cracker fumes went into his eyes. “I was checking as to why the flower pot which I had lighted was not lighting up. The fumes came up suddenly and entered my eyes, leaving me injured,” Anand said.

For the past three days, the Victoria Hospital has been receiving three to five cracker- related injury cases every day. Twelveyear- old, Girish from Shantipuram, was admitted to the hospital with his right eye and a part of his face badly burnt. Diwali celebrations will be on for a couple of days more. “Safety first” should be the mantra for a happier ending to the festival.


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