Fire

FOREST HILL — Investigators are blaming a recently-operated lawn tractor for sparking a blaze that destroyed a shed on the property of a Forest Hill residence — causing a total of approximately $5,000 in damage and one person to suffer minor burns, according to the Maryland Office of the State Fire Marshal.

The homeowner called 911 at 12:57 p.m. on Monday, after discovering the burning outbuilding in the 300 block of Bynum Ridge Drive, fire officials reported.

One person, whom investigators did not publicly identify, suffered minor burns while trying to extinguish the flames before area volunteer fire companies arrived, fire officials said. That person refused medical treatment at the scene, fire officials added.

Approximately 20 firefighters battled the blaze for about 20 minutes, before bringing it under control, according to fire officials, who noted that Bel Air Volunteer Fire Company served as the on-scene command unit.

The blaze caused approximately $2,500 in structural damage to the 10’-by-20’ wood-framed shed, and it destroyed an estimated $2,500 in property that was inside the outbuilding, including the riding lawnmower, a MOSFM spokesperson reported.

MOSFM detectives determined that the fire started in the area of the lawn tractor, which was parked inside the shed shortly after it had been operated, fire officials said. Investigators concluded that the “hot surface” of the riding lawnmower triggered the fire, and they listed “accidental” as the cause of the blaze, fire officials added.

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