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Smoke-free Diwali: Know toxic chemicals, metals present in firecrackers

By Oneindia
Google Oneindia News

New Delhi, Oct 18: At the very onset, OneIndia wishes all its readers a very happy Diwali. The festival of lights, starting from Wednesday, is one of India's biggest festivals celebrated by one and all with great pomp and joy.

However, as air and noise pollution level across the country has increased to a great proportion, here we would like to request all to stay away from burning firecrackers.


Recently, we have seen the Supreme Court banning sale of firecrackers in the Delhi-National Capital Region (NCR) during this Diwali season, to help check air and noise pollution level.

Here we bring you a graphic representation, prepared by news agency PTI, to outline the health hazards posed due to burning of firecrackers. Firecrackers contain very toxic chemicals and metals that have the potential to kill humans, animals and plants.

Some of the hazardous chemicals and metals present in firecrackers are charcoal, potassium nitrate and sulphur which together form the black powder found in firecrackers. They contain toxic dust and carcinogenic sulphur-coal compound.

Firecrackers also contain aluminum which can lead to dermatitis and bio-accumulation. The other chemical in firecrackers, strontium, can replace calcium in our body. The strontium chloride in firecrackers is also slightly toxic. The lithium found in firecrackers is also hazardous and produces irritating fumes when burnt.

The barium in firecrackers is very poisonous. The fumes produce by it can irritate respiratory tract and also has possible radioactive fallout. The copper metal, found in the form of polychlorinated dioxins and di-benzofurans, in firecrackers can lead to bio-accumulation and poses cancer risk.

The metals like nitrates and chlorates or perchlorates also lead to bio-accumulation, and pose developmental danger in children and unborn babies. Many of these metals remain suspended in the air for days and are poisonous to plants and animals.

The sulphur found in firecrackers is the cause of acid rain. The sulphuric acid affects water sources, vegetation and causes property damage.

The other elements like dextrin-glue and paper in firecrackers cause eye, nose, and throat irritation. They also cause headache, loss of coordination and nausea. They have the potential to damage liver, kidney, and central nervous system in our body.

So, stay away from burning firecrackers and enjoy a smoke-free Diwali this year.

OneIndia News

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