4th July fireworks could ignite coronavirus infections, since fireworks release toxic metals that are bad news for your lungs.
The U.S. could be headed for a “perfect storm” of factors that could lead to a major coronavirus spike after the Fourth of July holiday weekend – on top of the record 50,000 cases that were announced Thursday.
“It’s set up a perfect storm: the combination of travel, the combination of reopening – perhaps in some cases, too early – and the combination of people not necessarily following some of these preventive guidelines,” Dr. Joshua Barocas, an infectious disease physician at Boston Medical Center, said during a Wednesday briefing by the Infectious Diseases Society of America, reported CNN.
A new threat has been added to the risks posed by fireworks — they can release toxic metals that can damage your lungs.
These metals give fireworks their colors, according to researchers who found harmful levels of lead in two of 12 types of commercially available fireworks they tested.
Memorial Day weekend was a good example of that, he said, when some states saw spikes in cases afterward. Only New Jersey and Rhode Island continue to show decreases in the number of new cases, he said.
“I’m very concerned, especially given this coming weekend, that the same types of spikes, the same types of surges could be seen – not just in the places that are currently experiencing surges, but in places that have already experienced surges and in ones that haven’t yet,” he said, according to CNN.
Gordon and his colleagues collected emissions from a dozen fireworks commonly used in the United States by setting them off in a lab chamber, then exposed mice and human lung cells to low doses of the particles, to mimic an average person’s daily exposure to air pollutants.
Along with the lead finding, they found that particle emissions from five types of fireworks significantly increased oxidation, a chemical process in the body that can damage or even kill cells if left unchecked.