Police: NJ man set fire to his lawn to clear snow, ice

A hazmat team had to be called in to clean up gasoline poured on the ground

Josh Axelrod

MIDLAND PARK, N.J. — If you encounter a particularly rough patch of ice or snow while shoveling this winter, don’t reach for a can of gasoline like a Midland Park, N.J., man did on Friday, police say.

Police and firefighters responded to the man’s home on Paterson Avenue where he had set a small fire to try to melt the snow and ice. Once the fire department arrived, they called in the Bergen County Hazmat Unit, who used the Speedy Dry to sop up the gas.

The man, whom police would not name, had poured about a half-gallon of gasoline on a gravelly 2-foot by 2-foot square section of his backyard.

“He thought a good idea would be to dump some gasoline on and light it on fire,” police Lt. John Gibbons told NJ Advance Media.

A neighbor called the police after smelling something burning around 7:35 p.m..

“I don’t recall ever being dispatched to something like that,” Gibbons said. “It’s not very common, let’s put it that way.”


(c)2021 The Patriot-News (Harrisburg, Pa.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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