Central Crossing Department responds to grass, structure fire
The Central Crossing fire chief says a 14-year-old boy shooting fireworks accidentally caught a ditch and field on fire on Tuesday afternoon.
The blaze occurred southeast of Shell Knob at Highway 39 and Campbell Point Road near Table Rock Lake. It spread to a field and some trees and then destroyed one home and damaged another home.
Firefighters from four departments were able to protect a garage, a camper, a storage business and a large subdivision across the road.
The fire started about 2 p.m. Crews from the Southern Stone County Fire Protection District and the Eagle Rock-Golden-Mano Fire Protection District brought in tankers of water to assist Central Crossing firefighters. Firefighters cleared the scene after about four hours. Central Crossing Fire Chief Rusty Rickard said one house was a total loss, but it was an older wood frame not currently in use.
A second structure, a single-wide mobile home where a bedroom burned, is used as a weekend home by its owners. That structure sustained heavy smoke damage and fire damage to the rear bedroom.
Both houses are on the same property, which is east of Highway YY and across the street from the home of the teenage fireworks user.
"Despite the terrible conditions and high winds, crews were able to protect multiple surrounding exposures and extinguish the fire," Rickard said.
One firefighter was treated at the scene for minor smoke inhalation and another was treated on the scene for a minor cut. Cox Ambulance provided medical standby throughout the incident.
"This fire was caused by a single firework that was placed in the roadway by a teenager," Rickard said. "The firework went into the ditch, quickly ignited the grass and spread to the home. Currently no charges have been pressed."
The Stone County Sheriff's Office and the State Fire Marshal continue to investigate.
With the current conditions that include high fire dangers, high winds, high humidity levels and very dry fuels, Barry County fire chiefs strongly discourage any outside burning and suggest that fireworks are not used at this time.