A FIREWORK that exploded in a woman’s face would have blinded her if she wasn’t wearing glasses, her mother said last night.
Cathryn O’Nions must now undergo surgery for burns to her arms received when a fountain-style firework blew up in her face, setting her clothes on fire.
Relatives rushed to throw water over her and roll her on the grass at the bonfire party at the family home in Cegin Lane, Minera, near Wrexham on Wednesday night.
She was initially taken to Wrexham Maelor Hospital but later transferred to the specialist Whiston Hospital in Merseyside.
Last night doctors there said they hoped the facial burns were only superficial, but it was too early to tell.
Cathryn, 32, had returned to the lit firework to investigate why it hadn’t gone off.
Yesterday her mother Alison O’Nions held up her daughter’s charred baseball cap and shattered glasses, and said she was lucky not to have been blinded or killed.
Mrs O’Nions, a local girl guides leader, said: “We were having a party for the guides in the village with a few fireworks and a bonfire.
“As Cathryn went to light a small fountain-style firework it just exploded in her face.
“Her coat caught on fire and the first thing we knew was my son-in-law shouting ‘she’s on fire, quick.’
“Everybody rushed over and started throwing water on her and rolling her in the grass. It was just horrendous.
She added: “If she hadn’t been wearing her glasses, she would definitely have been left blind.
“When you look at her face now, she has a line across the top of her forehead where the cap came down to and the rest of her face is completely burnt.
“I don’t ever want to see another firework ever again.”
Fire service county operations manager for Wrexham, Ian Williams, said: “Fireworks and bonfires can be very dangerous – this is why we have been appealing to residents only to attend organised, professional events.
“The woman was lucky not to have come off a lot worse, it is important that people follow the instructions carefully and be cautious around fireworks.”
Also on Bonfire Night, three other women were injured when fireworks fired at them in Llanfairfechan.
The Daily Post spent a busy night out in Wrexham with firefighters who were inundated with record-numbers of calls in just three hours.
The control room dealt with just under 100 bonfire-related calls across North Wales in the time between 6pm and 12pm.
In total 172 calls were recorded including 39 in Conwy, 19 in Denbighshire, 32 in Flintshire, 10 in Gwynedd, 37 in Wrexham, 13 on Anglesey and 13 in other areas across the region.