Clovis News

Fourth ignites lots of work for firefighters

Firefighters in Fresno and Clovis cited three dozen people Sunday for possessing or setting off illegal fireworks during the July Fourth holiday. Firefighters also responded to a number of blazes ignited by fireworks.

In Fresno, firefighters cited 28 people for possessing or setting off illegal fireworks, and made one felony arrest and two misdemeanor arrests.

Seven teams were on patrol to prevent injuries and fires caused by the devices, a fire investigator said.

Battalion Chief Chuck Tobias said firefighters cited eight more people than last year, but the number of citations was about half of what firefighters issued in 2008. Tobias said he did not know what accounted for the drop in citations from 2008.

Firefighters also dealt with eight fires at structures and vehicles, and put out 10 Dumpster fires.

In Clovis, firefighters made two felony arrests and issued eight misdemeanor citation for illegal fireworks possession and use, the Clovis Fire Department said.

Fire investigators responded to 45 firework-related incidents and confiscated 250 pounds of illegal fireworks, said Acting Battalion Chief Jim Damico. Firefighters also put out a Dumpster fire that was started by embers from fireworks that were not properly extinguished.

Smoldering fireworks were blamed for a trash-can fire that caused about $20,000 damage to a northeast Fresno home just after midnight Sunday, authorities said.

The Fresno and Clovis fire departments responded to the blaze on the 7300 block of North Recreation Avenue. Tobias said the fireworks were not properly extinguished before being thrown out and ignited material in the trash can.

The flames melted the garbage can and spread to the garage and attic around 12:16 a.m. No one was injured.

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