Fireworks explosion: 'He's lucky he wasn't killed'
A MAN has suffered serious burns and may lose sight in one eye after trying to ignite fireworks in a birthday celebration gone horribly wrong.
Police confirmed the 36 year old had been attempting to light the wick of a commercial grade firework at a private address at Sarina when it exploded, causing significant injuries to his face, chest and arm.
About 5.45pm yesterday he was airlifted from Mackay Base Hospital to Townsville, in a serious condition.
Sarina Police Station Officer in Charge Sergeant Michael Jones said the man had been with a 22-year-old woman and another 36-year-old man when the explosion occurred about 3.46am yesterday.
It is understood they had been attempting to have the fireworks go off at the same time the young woman had been born to celebrate her birthday.
Sgt Jones said the explosive had been held in position by a steel pipe to help it launch into the sky and there had been a problem with the wick.
"We believe he put his hand down the pipe to light the wick and it's exploded," Sgt Jones said
As well as face, chest and arm burns, Sgt Jones said the man had a possible fractured arm and may lose sight in one eye.
"It's lucky that he wasn't killed," Sgt Jones said.
"The injuries that are sustained by people... when dealing with fireworks are horrific."
The other man received minor burns to his face and arm and the woman has issues with hearing due to the explosion.
Sgt Jones said this was a timely warning against playing with fireworks.
"This is why they're illegal," he said.
"Normally under the circumstances the person would be charged with unlawful possession of explosives.
"In this situation it seems the injuries sustained are of such a nature that his punishment received is in excess of anything a court would impose."
Sgt Jones said there was "no sinister side" to the incident.
"It's not in the public interest to charge him," he said.