Firefighter injured in leaf-burning mishap

Published 6:00 am Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Loyd Star volunteer firefighter is in critical condition in aGeorgia burn center after an accident while burning leaves at hishome Wednesday.

Officials said Mike Herring of California Road was sent to theJoseph M. Still Burn Center in Augusta, Ga., after he was burned onhis face, back and arms while trying to burn a pile of leaves athis home.

“He had put some gasoline on the leaves, and what happened fromthere, I’m not sure,” said Lincoln County Civil Defense Directorand Fire Coordinator Clifford Galey.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Officials said Herring’s wife Maria drove him to the emergencyroom after the accident occurred.

Loyd Star VFD President Kirk Douglas said Herring, who is in his40s, reportedly has burns on one arm, his back, his face and hisforehead.

“As I understand it, the big thing they were worried about wasthat burns to his face might mean there are burns in hisrespiratory system,” Douglas said.

Loyd Star Fire Chief Mark Porter said the fire department istrying to help Herring and his family any way they can. Herringserves as the emergency medical services trainer for thedepartment.

“We had talked yesterday about trying to do something to helphim out, but we don’t have anything concrete yet,” said Porter.”It’s in the works.”

Douglas said the community has rallied around the Herrings topray and pass along information.

“I put it out on a text message that Mike had been burned assoon as I found out,” Douglas said. “Within an hour everybody knewabout it, and they all got to texting people about everyone prayingfor Mike.”

Officials said at this point there is no way to tell whenHerring will be released from the burn center.

“Until we find out the initial report from Augusta, we won’tknow a point of return or anything,” Douglas said. “They said itcould be a week to four weeks, depending on his condition.”