57 injured at ‘South Beehive Fireworks’

By Ann Yu, The China Post

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Fifty-seven people were injured during Tainan’s “South Beehive Fireworks” event yesterday.

The South Beehive Fireworks is a major religious celebration held during the Lantern Festival in which people run past fireworks. Of the 57 people injured, 47 were hurt directly by the fireworks, according to local reports. According to Tainan’s Department of Civil Affairs (DCA), most of those injured were hurt in the upper body, including the neck and the head, while eight received eye injuries. A total of 24 were reportedly injured due to inadequate safety precautions.

Together with events like “East Handan” and “North Sky Lantern,” the South Beehive Fireworks is considered a main feature of the Lantern Festival. During the event, people run past firecrackers in order to remove bad luck and to honor deities.

Tainan City Government estimated that at least 100,000 people took part in the event.

The DCA said that participants’ eyes are especially vulnerable to injury and thus require special protection.