Fireworks kill young men in France and Germany

PARIS (AP) — A man in eastern France was killed when a New Year’s Eve firework exploded after he went back to inspect it, while another man was killed by a home-made firework in neighboring Germany.

The 25-year-old died instantly in the incident in Boofzheim, close to France’s eastern border with Germany, the regional government said Friday.

Another man was treated for facial injuries after the firework exploded as they were inspecting it.

The regional government had banned fireworks for New Year’s Eve and a nighttime curfew was in place to dissuade people from gathering in public during the coronavirus pandemic.

In neighboring Germany, police said a 24-year-old man died after lighting a home-made firework in Rietz-Neuendorf, about 30 kilometers (20 miles) southeast of Berlin.

Police said Friday that explosives experts found several more unused devices in the vicinity.

Germany banned the sale of fireworks this year, to deter gatherings and cut down on the large number of serious injuries that clog up hospitals every New Year’s Eve.

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