August 1, 1991
Release # 91-103

WASHINGTON, DC -- In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Patriot Fireworks, Inc., Elkton, MD is voluntarily recalling approximately 11,000 Patriot Missile Launcher fireworks devices. The device shoots four flaming balls approximately 200 feet into the air. It may tip over while operating, particularly when placed on an uneven surface, and fire shots horizontally at ground level which pose a hazard to spectators.

The CPSC learned of the potential hazard as a result of a report from a retailer of the device and from investigating a death of a three-year-old boy in the State of Kentucky. The young boy allegedly was struck in the head with a ball from a Patriot Missile Launcher which reportedly tipped over while firing.

The device consists of four two-inch diameter cardboard tubes approximately 10 inches long, glued vertically onto a seven and one-half inch square particle board base, and encased within a paper wrapping. The paper wrapping is white with red and blue printing and a picture on the front of a Colonial soldier against an American flag encircled by stars. The words "PATRIOT MISSILE LAUNCHER," also appear on the front of the label in large red, white, and blue print. On one side panel, the label reads in part, "PATRIOT Fireworks Elkton, Maryland 21922."

The fireworks devices were sold in a variety of retail stores and fireworks stands nationwide from February through mid- July 1991 at a retail price of about $18 to $29 per four-shot device.

Consumers are urged not to use these devices and to return them immediately to the store where purchased for a full refund. In the event the device was purchased from a temporary fireworks stand no longer operating, consumers should call Patriot Fireworks collect at 1-301-287-2365 for instructions on disposing of the device and obtaining a refund.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is announcing this recall as part of its mission to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with consumer products. The Commission's objective is to help reduce the estimated 28.5 million injuries and 21,600 deaths that occur each year with the 15,000 different types of consumer products within CPSC's jurisdiction.