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WAUKEGAN, Ill – A 24-year-old Waukegan man was seriously injured when fireworks blew up in his face. 

According to police, the man was trying to light fireworks Saturday night but they did not go off. When he bent down to check, the fireworks exploded in his face.

The man was airlifted from Vista East Medical Center to Lutheran General Hospital following the incident in the 400 block of County Street.

The man’s grandmother said he lost an eye and his injuries are severe. Outside of the hospital, she pleaded for people to be careful and avoid using fireworks. 

“Please do not play with these fireworks,” said Carman Benson. “They are dangerous. They are very, very dangerous and it doesn’t make sense. Why do they sell this kind of stuff?”

Fireworks are illegal in Illinois, but the law is largely ignored.

Experts suggest that when lighting fireworks, do so on a flat surface. Officials also warn users to keep a bucket of water nearby to discard used fireworks and to have it on standby in case of a fire.  

Also, officials say make sure a first aid kit on hand. 

As always, officials say you can leave the firework displays up to the professionals or go to a neighborhood show.