Backyard Brush-Burning Attempt Sparks Shed Fire
A man's attempt to burn brush in a backyard fire pit late Friday night got out of control when the flames spread to a neighbor's shed.
A Carol Place man's attempt to burn brush in his backyard fire pit got out of control Friday night when the man briefly stepped away from the fire and into his house.
"It was little when I went inside," said Johnny Perez, who explained that he lit some twigs around 11:30 p.m. to keep warm while performing maintenance on and filling his swimming pool. "When I came back out it was out of proportion."
The fire, fueled by brush, spread from the far east corner of his property and into his neighbor's backyard, where it caught the outside of a shed and engulfed the shed in flames.
Perez said that in a panic he tried unsuccessfully to fight the fire with a hose. Meanwhile, a passerby spotted the blaze and phoned authorities.
The fire department rushed to the scene and, within 15 minutes, had knocked down the fire — the flames of which were visible from the Route 208 Plaza Road ramp, one firefighter said.
The shed and a portion of a fence that divides Perez's house from his neighbor's house were charred and destroyed, but no one was injured in the fire.
"I'm thankful that my family is alright and that no one was harmed," said Perez, whose wife and children were inside sleeping when the fire broke out.
Perez, who moved to Fair Lawn from Tampa, Fla. a few months ago, said this was the first time he had ever attempted to burn something in one of his backyard fire pits.
Fire Marshal Jay Bender, who was at the scene, said residents are not allowed to burn brush in their backyards and that doing so is a fineable offense.