Man Loses Hand to Firework in Early July 4th Celebration

"I have an explosion and a man's hand is blown off"

Authorities say a central Florida man blew his left hand off with a firework during an early Fourth of July celebration.

The Orlando Sentinel reports the incident happened Thursday night just before 8 p.m. in a garage at a home in Leesburg.

The firework was attached to a wooden stake designed to be planted in the ground and had a foil-covered ball inside that explodes after launch. A witness told police that Brett Demascio lit the fuse, but the spark went out. He then picked up the foil-covered ball in his left hand, lit the shortened fuse and attempted to throw it. An incident report says the firework exploded early, tearing off most of the man's hand.

The homeowner called 911, telling the dispatcher "I have an explosion and a man's hand is blown off." Somone can be heard in the background of the call repeatedly moaning "Oh, my God."

Asked by the dispatcher if there is any "serious bleeding," the homeowner replies: "Yes, ma'am. His hand was blown off, yes there is serious bleeding."

Demascio was airlifted to an Ocala-area hospital. His updated condition wasn't available Friday.

No criminal charges were immediately filed.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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