Man dies after snowblower catches fire

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INDIANAPOLIS– A man died Monday after a snowblower caught fire and spread to the victim’s clothing.

The Indianapolis Fire Department (IFD) responded to the fire at 43rd and Sheridan just before 5:30 p.m. Monday. When they arrived, firefighters saw heavy smoke coming from the attached garage on the single-story home.

Investigators say the fire was contained to the snowblower. It’s believed the victim, 78-year-old Jonnie Douglas, was smoking while pouring gasoline into the snowblower’s tank in an effort to get ready for the upcoming cold weather.

The fumes ignited, setting the snowblower and Douglas’ clothes on fire. He was in critical condition while being transported to the hospital, where he later died.

IFD said Douglas’ death is the seventh fire fatality in their service district this year.

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