Fourth of July warning: Sparklers may have sparked Conn. house fire

The fire marshal doesn’t want anyone to take anymore chances when lighting off fireworks

PLAINFIELD, Conn. (WTNH) — The intensity of the fire on South Main Street was enormous. Two separate homes completely destroyed. At least three others were damaged and there could be a lesson to be learned with the July fourth holiday coming up.

sparkler-danger-plainfield-fire-1“Sounded like some young kids having a good time,” says neighbor Barbara Kline.

That good time turned tragic.

Plainfield’s fire marshal Paul Yellen says the official cause of the fire is undetermined but he believes someone lighting off sparklers similar to those you can buy legally in Connecticut may have set the vacant home on fire.

sparkler-danger-plainfield-fire-2“These were the tubs that you ignite and they just continue to shoot off,” says Yellen. “That’s the only thing that happened the night before in that area. Coincidence maybe not.”

sparkler-danger-plainfield-fire-3“I seen sparkles go up in the air about eleven o’clock that night,” says Kline who watched the buildings burn last week.

“They lost everything,” added Kline. “All their hopes and their dreams and their past are gone.”

With the holiday weekend around the corner the fire marshal doesn’t want anyone to take anymore chances when lighting off fireworks.

“They are phenomenally dangerous the sparks the flames can reach anywhere from a thousand to twelve hundred degrees and if you have anything dry or combustible around it it will sparkler-danger-plainfield-fire-4ignite it,” says Yellen.

He says fireworks should only be used with adult supervision and lit off on a driveway or in the middle of the lawn. Afterwards he says put them in a bucket of water.

“If you put it down and it’s still hot it could catch stuff and it was dry,” says Kline. “Everything was dry because we didn’t have any rain for a long time.”

Even handheld sparklers can be hot to the touch and the sparks and flames which come off them can spark another fire as well.

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