A grim tale retold each year in Bali after New Year’s celebrations records scores of residents have again fallen to wounds suffered in the handling of fireworks, traffic mishaps and inter-village rivalries.
The State News Agency Antara quotes an attendant on duty at an emergency room at one of Bali’s main hospitals reporting a steady stream of ambulances bringing the wounded and injured to their door over the New Year’s Eve period.
“Since before midnight, patients came in a steady flow. There were those injured by fireworks but even more injured due to traffic accidents,” he explained.
Data collected through 4:00 a.m. on New Year’s Day showed 37 casualties were treated at the unnamed hospital.
“There are already 37 people recorded as traffic casualties, but there are a few more not yet on the list, perhaps because of the busy rush of patients were not recorded on the list,” admitted the hospital staff member.
Meanwhile, a number of people have been treated in Bali's hospitals after mishandling fireworks. The hospital staffer said one of the victims had sustained injuries to his genitals due to poor handling of fireworks. However, the more common site of the injuries from poor firework handling affected the eyes and hands of victims who were overwhelmingly young people.
“Patients with fireworks wounds came to around 20, but again the data is not complete as some were still waiting for treatment at the time of the count,” shared the unnamed hospital worker.
Another hospital in Kuta said several patients suffering severe injuries were brought to their emergency room, including one man who lost several fingers when explosives ignited in his hands.
In Gianyar, celebrations with fireworks are blamed for the death of a 60-year-old man living on Lebih beach who was startled by the sound of a nearby firecracker before suffering a fatal heart attack.
The Jakarta Globe reports a teenager in Bali died after hitting a tree while driving his motorcycle. Smoke from fireworks is thought to have hindered his vision, contributing to the cause of the crash.
Also in Lebih, three teenage boys required emergency care after suffering wounds inflicted by firecrackers
Also In the Balinese region of Gianyar, Antara reports that brawls among area youth, disputing the borders between Banjar Wangbung in the village of Gawang and Banjar Tangkan in the village Ketewel, resulted in injuries to at least three people and the burning of a motorcycle by an angry mob.
Police were reportedly standing by in the affected areas of Sukawati to ensure simmering tensions did not reignite and result in further clashes.
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