Teen’s thumb left ‘hanging by a thread’ after firework ‘splits his hand in half’

A teenager was left brutally injured with his thumb hanging on by a thread after a powerful firework exploded in his hand.

Rio Diveney, 16 and from Oldham, required serious medical treatment after the rocket tore his hand in half. He also suffered severe burns to his chest, arms and abdomen.

The accident occurred after he went to light a £25 firework that had failed to explode when he was out with some friends, reports the Manchester Evening News.

Rio was rushed to Royal Oldham Hospital by his friends' mum before being transferred to Wythenshawe Burns Unit for further treatment.

"The doctors said he was lucky his hand wasn't blown completely off, the firework was that powerful," explained his dad Ricky, 37.

Rio himself has spoken about his ordeal as part of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service’s (GMFRS) ‘Bang Out of Order’ campaign.

He said: "I thought it was just a normal firework. I took it to the corner of the street went to light it and it just blew up, it didn’t make the normal noise a firework would.

"I've learnt that if someone offers you a firework, don't take it. Think about what can actually happen.

"I've been very lucky, I could've lost my hand completely, or the use of it, but I have been told I will regain the full use of it."

The teenager is undergoing weeks of physiotherapy before he will get full use of his hand back, thus he is unable to attend college for his joinery apprenticeship or play football for his Sunday League team.

He added: "I can’t do things – my dad has to help me do everything. I am right-handed, it’s stopped me from doing most things.

"It could have been my heart where my stitches were – it could’ve been a lot worse than it was."

Val Hussain, GMFRS group manager for Bury, Oldham and Rochdale, has issued a warning to Greater Manchester residents ahead of Bonfire Night this Friday.

She said: "Every year we see a number of people, including children, injured through the misuse of fireworks and sadly we have seen it happen again in recent weeks.

"If you are going to use fireworks at home, then please follow the firework code and that starts with making sure the fireworks have the CE standard mark on them.

"Fireworks can be enjoyable but can also be extremely dangerous if not used correctly."

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