IOP official: Our 4th of July fireworks show "is safe" - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

IOP official: Our 4th of July fireworks show "is safe"

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A cell phone picture of the Cherry Grove Pier explosion (WBTW) A cell phone picture of the Cherry Grove Pier explosion (WBTW)

An Independence Day firework celebration in North Myrtle Beach turned into a scary scene Thursday as a firework exploded, sending one man to the hospital.

News 2 has learned that the company responsible for the North Myrtle Beach incident is the same company that manages the show for the Isle of Palms.

Despite that fact, officials on the Isle of Palms have full confidence that the team at the Zambelli Company does a safe job.

"We've had the same team working with us for over 10 years," Mayor Dick Cronin said. "We have great confidence in them. They understand what we need, and they work very well with us."

In addition to the licensed firework operators, the Isle of Palms fire department is on standby, ready to act whenever a possible dangerous situation arises. 

"On our pier, where we are sending the fireworks from, is fully manned in full firefighting gear with a live hoses and oxygen tanks on their backs in the event that there is an accident and they have to respond," Cronin said.

The President of the firework company responsible for both shows says that firework shows always come with unpredictability because all of the shells are man-made.

"All of these shells are handmade individually," Dick Taylor said. "You can't use machines around explosives. They are all handmade individually, and if you have a couple hundred people in the factory, unfortunately, you're going to get a shell that will blow in a tube."

In 2012, the Isle of Palms had an incident where an ember from a launched firework was blown into one of the launching tubes and set multiple fireworks off at the same time. The head of the fire department said good training and quick thinking stopped the scene from becoming one similar to North Myrtle Beach.

"The worse case scenario for us so far was that we set the grand finale off a little bit early" Chief Ann Graham said. "It can happen, but the bottom line is that everyone was safe in the end."

Isle of Palms officials said they look at how they can improve the $25,000 show each year. They said the North Myrtle Beach accident has not prompted any changes, at this time.

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