THE father of a New Stevenston youngster who was burned by an exploding firework admits his son was ‘very lucky’ not to have suffered more serious injury.
Connor Tiffney (12) sustained burns to his hand after being scorched by ‘a banger’ near his home after encountering four older boys lighting fireworks last Thursday during his lunch break from Taylor High.
One of the devices flew towards Connor and he put his hand up to protect his face and it hit his hand.
He ran home and his dad George (43) gave him first aid then took him to Wishaw General Hospital for treatment.
George said: “Connor’s been very lucky that he hasn’t suffered far more serious injury. His hand is blistered and will need further treatment but he will get over this.
“He could easily have lost an eye or been very badly hurt.
“I hope the police catch whoever is responsible for having these fireworks in the first place as someone will soon be very badly hurt.”
The devices have also been blamed for an incident that saw a 15-year-old boy suffer serious injuries and scorching burns later the same day.
The teenager, thought to be a pupil at Brannock High, was also taken to Wishaw General then transferred to Glasgow Royal Infirmary suffering a serious hand injury.
He has now been released from hospital and is recovering at home in Holytown.
Hundreds of the fireworks involved were seized from a location in Blackmoor Place, New Stevenston. After carrying our tests police, trading standards officers and forensic explosive staff concluded they are counterfeit and pose a significant danger to the public.
It is also believed the illegal explosives, which come in a white box of 10 marked ‘BANGERS’, are now in the hands of other youngsters in Newarthill, Holytown, Carfin and New Stevenson.
Superintendent John McTear of Motherwell Polcie Office said: “Our primary role is keeping people safe, and as such we are still trying to investigate where these came from.
“We are trying to find out where in Strathclyde they can be bought, and would urge anyone who may have purchased them or have them in their possession to contact police who will dispose of these safely.
“Please do not put them in your normal household bin as they could be picked up by a young child and could cause them significant injuries.”
Uddingston and Bellshill MSP Michael McMahon was in no doubt where the blame lies.
He said: “I am obviously very concerned that youngsters have been badly injured because of fireworks. However, I think the blame has to lie with those who are responsible for the storing of these items, which have now been discovered to be counterfeit.
“Fireworks can be enjoyed totally legally but these irresponsible people are putting the public safety at risk and have caused two youngsters to be taken to hospital.”
Anyone with information should call Bellshill Police Office on 01698 202 400 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Meanwhile a 13-year-old from North Motherwell was charged with culpable and reckless conduct, also on Thursday afternoon, after allegly throwing fireworks from the railway bridge at near Logans Road in Motherwell.