Over a dozen fires in Contra Costa on July 3, at least 3 from fireworks

Over a dozen fires across Contra Costa on July 3, at least three due to fireworks
Photo credit: Con Fire

A vegetation fire Friday in a vacant lot near Market Avenue and Harold Street in North Richmond grew “to the size of a house,” according to the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District (Con Fire). Meanwhile, trains were slowed in Bay Point to protect firefighters working to contain a fire between Levee Road and the railroad tracks.

In both cases, fireworks were determined to be the cause of the fires. Also, fireworks caused a grass fire in Pittsburg.

On the eve of Independence Day, Con Fire reported over a dozen blazes, three of them determined to be the result of fireworks and the others under investigation. No injuries were reported.

Other incidents included a fire at 18th Street and Dover Avenue in San Pablo about 9:30 p.m. Meanwhile in unincorporated Rodeo, a barn burned down at the historic Claeys Ranch. Another four fires, two vehicles and two homes, occurred in Concord.

Con Fire has been reporting their activity on Twitter while urging residents to cease the dangerous use of illegal fireworks, which has exponentially increased this year as residents shelter-in-place amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

To illustrate the potential danger of lighting an illegal firework, Con Fire posted a video of a demonstration of a fire caused by a sparkler in an area of vegetation near Concord Pavilion: