Two Chicago women, sister-in-laws, were seriously injured in a horrific accident stemming from an illegal amateur-run fireworks display celebrating Independence Day.
One lost her foot in the gruesome ordeal.
Witnesses say that during the unsanctioned show’s finale around 11 pm in the West Lawn neighborhood, one of the four fireworks launched, danced along the ground rather than rising into the air, and exploded within the immediate vicinity of two women, reports Chicago Tribune.
Thirty-two-year-old Kristina Perez sustained injuries to her right foot and arm, and had her left foot blown off as a result. Her sister-in-law, who is married to her brother Enrico, 39-year-old Lorena Perez suffered severe burns to both her legs, reports WGNTV.
Roughly 200 people attended the display Thursday night, which is regularly held in the park annually. Just as they had done every year to celebrate the Fourth of July, Lorena and Kristina went to West Lawn Park on the South Side to watch neighborhood fireworks with their family and friends.
Relatives in attendance, who are still in disbelieve, recall Kristina screaming for an ambulance following the explosion.
Both women were rushed off for emergency medical treatment and are still listed in serious condition at the Advocate Christ Medical Center.
Chicago has stringent rules on fireworks, according to NBC Chicago. A Chicago Fire Department spokesman stated, “If it goes bang or has a flame it’s illegal to use in city limits.” This includes sparklers.
Authorities investigating the incident found the remnants of a Converse sneaker along with leftover fireworks in the park.
The Chicago Fire Department responded to several fireworks-related injuries, including burns, July 3 and 4 as unauthorized pyrotechnics lit up the sky across the city.
Overall, the Perez women’s injuries were considered the most serious.
Hundreds of people in the US regularly suffer serious burns or even lose fingers while playing with fireworks during or on the days surrounding the Fourth of July.
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