Fireworks caused two house fires in Papillion early Wednesday. No one was injured.
The Papillion Fire Department responded to a call about 1:30 a.m. near Diane Street and Hardwood Drive. Used fireworks discarded in a plastic trash can sparked a fire that damaged the siding of the home and one nearby. The fireworks had been hosed down.
The department responded to a second call about 5 a.m. near Durham and Citadel Drives. Fireworks in a trash can near the side of the house also caused the second house fire. Only the exterior of the house was damaged.
Both families had evacuated their homes before firefighters arrived. A spokesman said the fires were put out quickly and no one was injured.
In neighboring Omaha, the fire department responded to 25 firework-related calls Wednesday, said Capt. Tim McCaw, spokesman for the Omaha Fire Department. None involved fires, he said.
To prevent fires related to fireworks, Capt. Jason Schendt said, families should soak fireworks with water and leave them on the curb overnight before disposing of them in a metal trash can.
Meanwhile, two men were expected to spend at least a couple of nights in a Lincoln hospital after they were burned when a device made out of fireworks exploded Tuesday night.
The two men, believed to be in their teens or early 20s, were taken to the burn unit at St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center and apparently suffered second- and third-degree burns.
The explosion was reported about 10:30 p.m. at a house party just west of Holmes Lake.
Rick Campos, an investigator with the city's Bureau of Fire Prevention, said he isn't certain what type of explosive caused the injuries, and others at the party said they didn't know.
“Obviously, we did find some post-blast evidence that there were illegal fireworks there and that they were making fireworks,” he said. “We haven't been able to talk to the individuals yet.”
Campos said he hoped to speak with the men, who were not identified, by today.
Alcohol did not appear to be a factor, Campos said.
The men might be hospitalized for a week.
This report includes material from the Associated Press.
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