A southwest Iowa man was critically injured over the weekend when a large firecracker exploded in his hand. Pottawattamie County Jeff Danker says the incident happened at a party in Council Bluffs around 10:30 on Friday night.
Danker says the powerful firework was likely what’s known as an M-80. “It pretty well took that hand off at the wrist,” the sheriff says. The victim was flown by helicopter to the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha for treatment of very severe injuries. M-80s are illegal in Iowa.
Sheriff Danker says he hasn’t seen any here in quite a while. “I don’t know where they purchased them, whether they got them out of Missouri or where. I don’t think they sell them around here,” Danker says. “They’re very dangerous. If for whatever reason the fuse goes faster or there’s a problem with it, it can cause very severe injuries.”
The victim is identified as 30-year-old Cole Mayer of Council Bluffs. Bystanders placed tourniquets on Mayer’s arm to try and stop the bleeding until emergency crews arrived.
(Reporting by, Ric Hanson, KJAN, Atlantic)