The annual fireworks show at Bethesda Country Club left one worker with a small burn to the face and a trip to the hospital, according to Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services.
On June 30, the night of the Club’s “Fireworks Spectacular,” two members of the fireworks company operating the show were injured after a malfunction with the fireworks, MCFRS spokesperson Beth Anne Nesselt said.
One worker, who was wearing a helmet and eye and ear protection was hit by a 4-inch mortar shell that detonated prematurely about five feet off the ground, according to a significant incident map from MCFRS. Part of the mortar struck the victim in the right side of the face, causing a bruise and a small 2nd-degree burn, resulting in non-life threatening injuries.
Nesselt said MCFRS transported that worker to a local hospital. The second worker was evaluated on-scene and did not require a hospital trip.
The fireworks display was licensed, according to the Maryland State Police. Bethesda Country Club is one of many area country clubs that acquire licenses for fireworks shows, which requires insurance coverage and professional operators.
More than 1,350 attended the show, according to a post about the event on Bethesda Country Club’s blog. It makes no mention of the incident but does talk about wet and rainy conditions that arrived after the show started at 6:30 p.m.