An Explosive Surprise

Rita Albert, Staff Reporter

A gender reveal party gone terribly wrong

What all started off as a joyful event, ended in a terrible chaos. A couple was throwing a party trying to reveal the gender of their new baby. The off-duty border patrol agent, Dennis Dickey of Tuscan, Arizona, 37, shot a rifle at a target containing Tannerite near Green Valley in Arizona. Tannerite powder is not illegal, but is a highly explosive. The idea was to have either pink or blue smoke come out, but what actually happened caused a lot of damage.

          The target exploded and sparked flames that led to the nearby Coronado National Forest. This fire took over 800 firefighters to put out and it burned for over a week with the dry weather conditions in Arizona. It burned across over 47,000 acres of land. There was a total of $8.2 million worth in damages. This fire became known as the “Sawmill Fire” and actually forced hundreds to have to evacuate their homes due to safety precautions. Thankfully, nobody was harmed.

           Dickey was actually the one who reported the fire as soon as it happened and admitted to starting it. On Friday, Dickey pleaded guilty to a misdemeanour violation of US Forest Service regulations. He will have to pay $100,000 up front, as well as paying monthly payments of $500 for 20 years. He is said to feel horrible about the incident which was a complete accident. Dickey, however, will not lose his job because he was not on duty at the time.