Fireworks cited in 2 Fourth of July grass fires
Fireworks were to blame for at least two grass blazes in Ypsilanti Township on the Fourth of July.
The first occurred in the area of South Hydro Park where 8-acres of grass burned in May. The cause of the previous fire was broken glass in the field acting in the way a magnifying glass does. When the sun hit it just right, the fire started.
At 3:32 p.m. on Wednesday, the Ypsilanti Township Fire Department responded to the same area near Textile and Bridge roads for a field fire. This time, however, it’s believed fireworks shot off at nearby Lake Pointe Apartments are to blame.
“The sheriff’s department was told that people were shooting fireworks off from the apartment complex into that field,” said Ypsilanti Township fire Lt. Brad Johnson. “That would be the probable cause of this fire.”
A few acres of grass were on fire when crews arrived. It burned the area not affected by the fire in May.
“It was moving rapidly because of the winds” Johnson said.
Trucks specially built to battle grass fires from departments in Pittsfield, Augusta and Superior townships came to Ypsilanti Township’s aid. The Ypsilanti Fire Department also assisted in putting out the fire, which took about an hour and a half to put out.
There was no reported damage. In fact, Johnson said the grass grows back greener and healthier after a fire.
“It’s actually good for the land,” he said.
Ypsilanti Township fire was dispatched to the 1300 block of Duncan Avenue for a second firework-related incident at 7:09 p.m. Wednesday.
A lawn caught fire after a bottle rocket landed in it.
“The backyard was smoldering,” Johnson said. “It was a pretty small area.”
Firefighters quickly had the situation under control.
Johnson said the heat and severely dry conditions definitely played a factor in both fires. Rain Wednesday night and Thursday will help, though.
“We got a little bit of rain,” said Johnson. “Things aren’t quite so brittle.”