Man killed by fireworks in San Francisco
A man died after suffering firework-related injuries in San Francisco barely an hour after the new year arrived, police said.
The San Francisco Police Department said that at approximately 12:40 a.m. Monday, officers responded to a report of someone injured by fireworks in the 1200 block of Exposition Drive on Treasure Island.
Upon arrival, they found a man suffering life-threatening injuries, police said.
The victim was given first aid, but when paramedics arrived, he was pronounced dead.
Witnesses said they heard what sounded like an explosion when a firework went off in the neighborhood.
“I turned the other way to look down the street and he was just laying there,” said Linda, a witness who did not share her last name. “He was just really laying there, and they kept saying, ‘Get up, get up,’ and he couldn’t get up.”
Neighbors said they saw a small group of people setting off fireworks in the street in the moments before it happened.
“My neighbors were all out. They said, ‘Don’t look at the body, don’t go, it’s not good,'” May Sue Moua said.
On Monday afternoon, candles surrounded the spot where first responders pronounced the man dead.
Police didn’t immediately say what kind of fireworks were used.
While authorities investigate, San Francisco firefighters are reminding the public that purchasing and setting off fireworks is both illegal in San Francisco and dangerous.
“Fireworks that you can purchase at various locations outside the city and county of San Francisco are extremely dangerous,” San Francisco Fire Department Lt. Jonathan Baxter said. “Sparklers that we see a lot of actually burn hot enough to melt gold. So, you can imagine if that was your hand or a child or a friend or a loved one.”
The fire department explained that most fireworks bought on the street don’t have the same safety mechanism as professional grade fireworks used in professional shows and there’s no way to be sure of what street fireworks are made of.
San Francisco police ask anyone with relevant information to contact them at (415) 575-4444 or text TIP411.