Fireworks malfunction at event investigated

Authorities are trying to determine what caused a malfunction that sent fireworks shooting into a crowd of spectators during a celebration in Salt Lake City.

At least 10 people, including some children, were injured during the Pioneer Day fireworks display Saturday night at Herman Franks Park south of downtown, Salt Lake City Fire Department spokesman Scott Freitag said Sunday.

Freitag said the injuries were mostly minor burns and bruises, but two people were taken to local hospitals. The Salt Lake Tribune reported on its website that one person remained hospitalized Sunday.

"There may have been more that didn't seek treatment," Freitag said.

Investigators said the accident started when one of the fireworks charges exploded before it was shot out of a tube, which was connected to three others. The blast knocked the other three mortar tubes from vertical to horizontal, shooting the fireworks at people about 240 feet away on the edge of the park grounds.

Freitag said investigators and the company that put on the show, which passed an inspection on Thursday and is a longtime provider for the city's fireworks displays, were trying to figure out what caused the initial blast .


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