SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) --A 10-year-old boy's father is under arrest after a tragic incident involving illegal fireworks. The boy now has devastating damage to his hand after he found the fireworks in his home in San Jose and lit them.
Police are still trying to determine where the fireworks were purchased and whether the intent was to sell them on the black market.
The explosion was so powerful it blew the screens off the bedroom window where the boy had discovered the fireworks.
The noise caused neighbor Ron DeMario to run down the street where he found the boy bleeding profusely. Instinct kicked in. He took off his shirt, using it to tie a tourniquet to stop the bleeding. He remembers the scene vividly.
"It took me a while, it freaked me out. I'm still shaken up about it, that's how bad it was," DeMario said. "Neighbors were passing out. I was trying to take care of them, too."
San Jose police discovered 14 pounds of firecrackers and more powerful fireworks inside the home.
"There was a great deal of fireworks," San Jose Police Sgt. Healther Randol said. "We're grateful that they didn't all ignite, but it was enough to cause a serious injury."
The boy's father has been arrested for child endangerment and possession of illegal fireworks. It's not known how the boy ignited the fireworks, although the ABC7 News crew noticed discarded cigarette lighters on a nearby street.
More than twice as many kids get injured each summer from swing accidents -- about 4,000 -- but those injuries are nothing like an injury from fireworks.
Fireworks injure more than 1,900 kids each year around the 4th of July, when fireworks are popular. They are illegal in San Jose.
Youngsters on a school field trip seemed aware of the risks.
"Sometimes kids get burned; sometimes they lose their fingers," Miguel Flores said.
"If I saw fireworks, I would go somewhere safe," Skyler Meadows said.
The local hospital treating the boy is not releasing his name or condition.