Md. Man Burned Using Gasoline in Fireplace


An Anne Arundel County man was rushed to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center on Saturday after an explosion that fire officials said happened when the man tried to light a fire with gasoline.

Paramedics and firefighters were called to a home in the 100 block of Franklin Avenue in Brooklyn Park at about 7:15 p.m.

The 41-year-old victim was taken to Bayview with life-threatening second- and third-degree burns to his lower extremities.

"What happened with this gentleman could easily happen to someone else," said Capt. James Rostek of the Anne Arundel County Fire Department.

He said the victim, who hasn't been identified, tried to use gasoline to light a fire in the fireplace in the basement of the home.

"The gentleman was lighting the fire in his fireplace where the wood was wet, and he used a flammable accelerant to try to start it. There was a flashover where there was a fireball that engulfed him. The fire burned itself out by the time we arrived," Rostek said.

Several neighbors on the block called 911 to report the explosion.

Rostek said it's extremely unsafe to use flammable liquids to start fires inside. He discouraged anyone else from trying to do so.

"It's extremely dangerous. Gas should only be used in automobiles, lawnmowers, etc. -- never as an accelerant to start a fire," he said.

There's no word on the victim's current condition.

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