DOWNEY -- Illegal fireworks are being blamed for igniting two fires in Downey on Tuesday, including one blaze that scorched a home and displaced three residents.
The first blaze was a brush fire reported at 10:08 a.m. at 9512 Pico Vista Rd. Authorities say illegal fireworks ignited vegetation adjacent to a home.
Brush and trees were fully engulfed when firefighters arrived. It took two engines one hour to extinguish the fire and overhaul the burned-out area.
The second fire was reported at 10:08 p.m. at 9202 Chaney Ave. Authorities say illegal fireworks ignited the occupied home's wood-shake roof, sending flames into the attic.
Firefighters quickly extinguished the flames, but not before they caused extensive damage, officials said. Three residents living inside the home were displaced.
Tuesday happened to be the first day for two of the Downey Fire Department's newest firefighters. Both responded to the Chaney Avenue fire.
Another two new firefighters begin their first day Thursday, and the fifth new firefighter starts Saturday.
Fire Chief Mark Gillaspie said the fire department will have one additionally-staffed engine company on July 4.
Downey allows the sale of "safe and sane" fireworks that can be purchased from approved vendors starting at noon July 1. Fireworks can be legally discharged only between 3-10 p.m. July 4.
Anyone caught shooting illegal fireworks in Downey faces a minimum fine of $2,000.