Beach arson could have been explosion after teens set fire near propane tank

Posted at 11:28 PM, May 06, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-06 23:28:22-04

Virginia Beach, Va.-  It was a pretty close call for one Beach man who says a couple of arsonists set his fence on fire near a propane tank.

Buddy Beard came home after a long day at work Friday and any dreams of a peaceful weekend were ruined when he saw the burned fence.

"I rush back here and it was nothing but a big black hole right there," Beard said.

Beard's neighbor witnessed two teens set the fence on fire.

"Actually ran through my gate, picked up my hose, and started putting the fire out and then the fire department showed up," Beard said.

Beard worries if the fire had spread another foot, the propane tank would have exploded.

"They could have been killed and that's scary. Even after doing something this stupid, and then lose your life for it. There was no sense in it," Beard said.

Beard put plywood up as a temporary fence. Now he doesn't know when he'll have enough time to put up a permanent one.

As for the Jacuzzi Beard says, "We like to sit out here and enjoy our libation and jump in the hot tub and it's fun, and now that's gone for right now."

Beard says he's just happy his neighbor put enough water on the fire before back-up arrived to prevent the propane tank from detonating and damaging his house.