HUDSON — A resident is facing two first-degree misdemeanor charges in connection with what the fire chief called "a very large brush fire" in a field on Barlow Road west of Terex Road Saturday afternoon.
No one was injured and no homes were damaged in a blaze that covered nearly 9 acres of swamp-like land, said Fire Chief Jerry Varnes.
Police Chief Perry Tabak said the fire was started "unintentionally … through use of fireworks in [an] area which adjoins the now-burnt-out field."
Tabak added a 36-year-old man who lives on a property adjacent to the area that caught fire was cited for unlawful discharge of fireworks and inducing panic, and was issued a summons.
Tabak said police officers who were on the scene Saturday spoke with the man and noted "he was very cooperative." He added the fire is not under any further investigation.
Varnes said a neighbor called 911 to report the blaze at about 4:35 p.m. Saturday.
When crews arrived, Varnes said, the fire containing flames that were as high as "60 to 70 feet" was within 20 feet from a home and firefighters had to work quickly to knock it down. Varnes said it was a "mad scramble" to make sure the blaze did not reach the house, but noted the wind was working in his crews’ favor, as it blew the fire "parallel to the home" rather than toward it.
The residents of this home, which was not the home of the man who started the fire, had already evacuated by the time fire crews arrived, said Varnes.
Varnes said it took "a full hour to get [the fire] under control," and another 45 minutes to make sure all the hot spots were extinguished.
Working on a "swampy, marshy" terrain added to the difficulty of the work, Varnes said.
"It was a challenge all the way around," the chief added.
Varnes said Valley, Twinsburg and Stow fire departments were called in to assist.
Reporter Phil Keren can be reached at 330-541-9421, email@example.com, or on Twitter at @keren_phil.