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Truck carrying fireworks explodes in east Toledo neighborhood, injuring 3

Toledo Police and fire crews responded to the call around 10:22 p.m. on Berry Street.

TOLEDO, Ohio — Three people were injured by fireworks after a U-Haul truck with fireworks in it caught fire in east Toledo on Sunday evening. 

Police and fire crews responded to reports of a vehicle fire in the 800 block of Berry Street around 10:22 p.m.

It's unknown how the U-Haul caught fire but it's believed a block party was happening nearby where fireworks were being set off. 

While the incident is still under investigation, it's believed that fireworks were both inside and outside of the truck, according to Toledo Fire & Rescue Department spokesperson Pvt. Sterling Rahe.

Many neighbors told police they saw someone throw a lit M-80 into the back of the U-Haul.

"They threw like a half a stick of dynamite or something into the back of the truck and blew up the truck," said Tevin Jones. "And chain reacted and blew up all of the fireworks that we had sitting next to it."

While many of the neighbors here ran for cover, some tried in vain to put the various fires out.

"That's how people got hurt because they were over there trying to throw water on it, and the fire was still going off," Jones said. "I saw one guy, he was pouring with the cooler, pouring water on it and it popped up and hit him in the side and he had no shirt on. And he yelled and ran. It was crazy, man."

Neighbors and fire officials both agree this incident is the perfect example of how too many fireworks in the hands of amateurs is a recipe for disaster.

"This is an example of why fireworks should be held and taken care of by the professionals in a controlled environment as best as they can," said Rahe.

All three people who were injured had to be taken to the hospital, two by life squad and one by a private vehicle.

Their conditions are unknown at this time.

Videos on social media show multiple, rapid-fire explosions that reach people's porches and send them scrambling for safety.

Resident Val McKee shielded her daughter from the rockets as they blasted onto the porch. She said the experience was frightening, especially for her daughter. McKee captured the aftermath of the fire on the truck and the fireworks racing through the neighborhood here: 

Credit: WTOL