Tilton man's eye said in jeopardy after fireworks cake mishap

TILTON — Police Chief Robert Cormier said the family of a Vista Heights Road man reported he could loose his left eye after a fireworks display struck him in the face.
Cormier said James Virgin, 48, of 45 Vista Heights had ignited a 19-shot AAH firework cake and one of the charges hit him in the eye. He said the other 18 shots went into the air.
Police said their initial investigation indicated the firework was anchored properly to the ground, that spectators were a safe distance away, and there was a hose nearby. He said the firework was purchased locally and was a class C-rated device, meaning it was rated for consumers and not professionals.
Cormier said Virgin was lucid and calm during the incident and told police that he thought the firework had a "quick fuse."
Virgin was transported by ambulance to Lakes Region General Hospital where he was transferred to Massachusetts General Hospital.
Cormier said fireworks dealers recommend using an 18-inch punk or smoldering stick to set off all fireworks.