TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Police say a fire that destroyed a house on Monday night, June 26, was started by teens playing with sparklers.
According to Tucson Police Department spokeswoman Sgt. Kim Bay, the two teens each face felony charges of criminal damage and endangerment and a misdemeanor charge of reckless burning.
Police do not believe the fire was intentionally set.
They were not supervised by an adult while playing with the sparklers in the parking lot of a nearby apartment complex near East 22nd Street and South Rosemont Avenue.
Police say a sparkler, or a piece of one, landed in the backyard of a man's house in the 5100 block of East 23rd Street, ignited dry grass, and the fire burned a shed and spread to his home.
The man credits his service dog for waking him up and saving his life.
Sparklers are legal to use all year round. Captain Andy Skaggs with the Tucson Fire Department says however, sparklers should be used with caution.
"Sparklers burn at 1,200 degrees. They're extremely hot," Skaggs said.
As the Fourth of July draws closer, he is asking everyone to be careful.
"Have a water source. A bucket of water, a hose line, something close by. Have adult supervision. Clear an area. Do it over a concrete pad, not next to a structure," Skaggs said.
TPD also reminds everyone of the following:
- Use of fireworks, and sale of fireworks other than permissible consumer fireworks, is prohibited within the city;
- You may possess but not use any fireworks within the city limits.
- You may be held liable for any emergency response resulting from the use of fireworks.
- You may be held criminally liable for any fire set or damage caused by the use of fireworks.
- Permissible consumer fireworks may not be sold to persons under sixteen years of age.
- The use of permissible consumer fireworks as defined under state law is allowed: June 24 - July 6 and December 24 - January 3
- The sale of permissible consumer fireworks as defined under state law is allowed: May 20 - July 6 and December 10 - January 3 · All other fireworks are prohibited, except as authorized by local fire department permit.
- The sale and use of novelties known as snappers (pop-its), party poppers, glow worms, snakes, toy smoke devices and sparklers are permitted at all times. Check with your local fire department for additional regulations and dates before using.
PERMISSIBLE Consumer Fireworks:
- Ground and handheld sparkling devices.
- Cylindrical fountains.
- Cone fountains.
- Illuminating torches.
- Ground spinners.
- Flitter sparklers.
- Toy smoke devices.
- Wire sparklers or dipped sticks.
Fireworks NOT PERMITTED: Anything that is designed or intended to rise into the air and explode or to detonate in the air or to fly above the ground, including, for example, firework items commonly known as bottle rockets, sky rockets, mortars, missile-type rockets, helicopters, torpedoes, roman candles, jumping jacks and M-80 type ground salutes.
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