|Children hold ’galaxy balloons’ in Hà Nội. — VNA/VNS Photo|Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Three university students were admitted to the hospital yesterday with serious burns after the balloons they were selling exploded.
Doctors at E Hospital in Hà Nội said the students suffered injuries mainly in their head and neck.
Duy Hiến, the doctor who administered first-aid, said a group of students had purchased galaxy balloons to resell them in front of schools in the city, with prices ranging from VNĐ60,000 to VNĐ100,000 (US$2.7-4.4) each.
Yesterday, the balloons caught fire, reportedly from lit cigarettes, and exploded.
The colourful and glistening balloons are a popular means of entertainment in countries such as China or Germany. These balloons are filled with helium, which is lighter than air and causes the balloons to float. But in Việt Nam, unscrupulous balloon manufacturers opt instead for hydrogen, a cheaper but easily flammable alternative. In addition, the balloons are also usually outfitted with coloured LEDs to make them appear more attractive, but in fact, the carelessly wired electronics just pose additional risks of fire. — VNS