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Jul 4, 2015 12:52 PM

Homemade firework hits a Strafford home, maker may face charges

STRAFFORD – The maker of a cannon-style firework that blew a hole through a roof and nearly hit a dog may face charges after police and the state fire marshal complete their investigation.

The Union Leader reports that no one was hurt, and the house at 43 Water St. did not catch fire, according to Fire Chief Scott Whitehouse.
The homemade firework exploded and flew hundreds of feet, damaging the home and nearly missing a dog in the upstairs room where the firework landed, the fire chief said. The incident occurred just as the town's fireworks display was about to begin Friday evening.

"We could have had a very bad situation, it could have been much worse," Whitehouse said. If the projectile had blasted in any other direction, people waiting outside for the town's fireworks display could have been injured, he said. "These people were dealing with explosives that should be left to professionals."

Homemade fireworks are illegal in New Hampshire, he said, but declined to identify who had made or set off the homemade firework.

The cannon, he said, consisted of a 2-inch pipe, a 1½-inch pipe, some cast-iron parts and black powder. But the cannon, which was designed to fire a projectile high in the air, itself became a projectile.

"The firework blew a 6-8 inch hole in the home's roof," he said. "Nobody was in the home at the time except the dog."

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