Wayward firework strikes Detroit man in chest, kills him on July 4


A Detroit man was killed Friday evening when a wayward firework struck him in the chest and exploded.

Paramedics rushed to the scene of Plainview near Whitlock, where neighbors said a man in his 40s was killed after being struck by a firework at 10:30 p.m.

Witnesses said the man was lighting the fireworks when one of them flew horizontally at him.

About an hour later, firefighters were called to the same block for a suspicious house fire at 6459 Plainview on the west side.

Police are investigating.

Michigan loosened its fireworks laws in 2011, legalizing airborne fireworks.

Opponents of the law are collecting petitions at Moveon.org.

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.

  • falseprophet

    Thats what happens when people shoot off 3 and 4 inch mortars in their yards. These are for the professionals people.

  • Melissa S. Griggs

    Sounded like a WAR where I live (just north of Detroit) I like the “Fireworks” that go up and make pretty sparkles of colored twinkles. But why do we need “Explosives” thay sound like cannons? The entire house shook. I remember an uncle using a stick of dynamite to remove a tree stump, 35 or 40 years ago. Some of the stuff blowing up Friday night was louder than that. I just don’t get why such huge explosions are necessary?

  • bebow

    I agree with Brene Robin. The stuff going off all night in the neighborhoods sounded like mortar rounds. Whomp! These explosive projectiles are extremely dangerous for anyone in the area.

  • Brene Robin

    This is such an unfortunate tragedy. My heart goes out to him and his family. Fireworks are perlious and for states to permit more of the most dangerous fireworks and leniency on them all is just asinine. I believe I heard the initial reason for them to be lenient was for money not even considering the many lives that are at stake. I live in an area where the fireworks never ended, these weren’t just regular fireworks they were really powerful. It was like I was in a war zone. It kept going all night pass the restricted times causing me to call the authorities. I don’t think it worked.

    Legislators must really reconsider this law. At least set some limitations, many people are loaded with ample amount fireworks that it’s ridiculous.