Children hurt by a cannon at a Civil War reenactment this week is one story firing across news headlines this morning. Three children in Utah were said to suffer moderate burns after the Civil War cannon prop malfunctioned and partially exploded in a blaze of sparks, injuring the nearby kids. The New York Daily News reports this Monday, June 16, 2014, that all three of the children are now in stable condition, and an investigation is being launched into the volatile accident.
A Civil War reenactment parade sounds like a day of educational fun, but three children were hurt by a cannon after it inadvertently misfired during the performance. As part of the Orem Summerfest parade in Utah this Saturday evening, three local children were burned via literal cannon fire after the machine was said to have “malfunctioned …and gone off,” with sparks hitting an ignition pouch and exploding near a girl and two boys. All three of the children (aged between nine and 12) were said to be part of the acting group when the scary incident occurred.
Seconds after the cannon misfired in the preparation of the Civil War reenactment, some white-hot sparks were said to have struck a loaded pouch filled with more ammunition for the historic device itself. CNN News added that the pouch then exploded, hitting the kids that were standing around the “prop” at the time. Witnesses were said to be both scared and shocked by the accident.
“Originally there was just a bunch of smoke, and we saw a kid duck out from underneath and then we saw three different kids on fire,” witness Corina Johnson said to a local news source. “There were people yelling to stop, drop and roll, water bottles flying so they could get some things going.”
Since then, parade officials and city officers released an official statement saying that the children hurt by cannon fire are now in stable condition. However, what particular burns they received from the sizzling sparks and the overall injuries they suffered has not been determined yet. Ultimately, it seems that this particular reenactment of the Civil War (which are normally engaging, safe, and excellently performed events) was a little too real for comfort.
An update was provided by the Daily that said the two boys and a girl all have second and first degree burns, mostly on their arms and torsos. They are expected to make a full recovery, though it may understandably be a while before they express an interest to play as children from the American Civil War era again in the future.