Improperly disposed fireworks spark Chesterfield house fire

4 people were displaced
Published: Jul. 5, 2022 at 1:12 AM EDT|Updated: Jul. 5, 2022 at 7:27 PM EDT
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CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) - Chesterfield fire officials said improperly discarded fireworks are to blame for a late-night house fire on July 4.

Two adults and two children were forced out of their home after the fire started at 11:57 p.m. on Twisted Cedar Court.

No injuries were reported in the blaze.

The fire started on the roof and spread through the house, leaving a shell of a structure behind.

Around the Fourth of July every year, fireworks are a common cause of injuries and property damage.

“With COVID, so many people were stuck inside and obviously wanted to still be able to do stuff with their family and kids over the holidays,” VDFP Assistant State Fire Marshal of Special Operations Billy Hux said. “It’s created a huge demand in the consumer fireworks industry.”

Hux says over the years, there have been more frequent inconsistencies with fireworks manufacturing.

He says fireworks can and will occasionally malfunction, so the department tests them annually.

“We put those items on the line and they sit there for 15 minutes after we use them. The last part of the test is to make sure that they don’t spontaneously combust or reignite and start burning,” Hux said. “That is something that we do see on occasion.”

Certain fireworks are illegal in Virginia. In the Commonwealth, a person is not legally allowed to possess, use, store, sell or handle any firework that explodes or rises into the air.

If you have a firework that has been used or even a “dud” that never ignited, be sure to soak it in a bucket of water for at least three hours, or overnight if you can, before disposing of them.

Fire officials say that family and friends are helping those who were displaced.

Copyright 2022 WWBT. All rights reserved.

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