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Firefighter Charged With Arson After Gas Theft Goes Bad

Poorly-Trained Firefighter Doesn't Know What an Explosion-Proof Motor Is

A FREEPORT, LONG ISLAND (New York) volunteer firefighter was charged with arson after he set a fire department untility truck on fire while trying to steal gasoline from it on Saturday.

Freeport Fire Station 5 – location of the incident
(Google Street View)

Steven Pena, 23, had brought his personal vehicle to the fire station intent on stealing the gasoline from department vehicle that was out of service for mechanical reasons.  He hooked up a wet-or-dry vacuum (shop-vac) and began extracting gasoline from the truck's tank when the motor sparked the vapors and caused him to knock the vacuum over, spilling some of the gas.  The fire quickly spread to both vehicles catching both of them on fire, too.

Two other members came out to help him put out the fire and they both received minor burn injuries in the attempt.  Both vehicles were completely destroyed in the blaze.

Following an investigation, the police arrested Pena Monday and he was arraigned Tuesday before being released on $5,000 bond posted by friends of his.  This is not the first time that he has been in trouble for thievery.  He was convicted as a "youthful offender" previously for robbery.

Newsday has the STORY.

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Jim

    How incredibly stupid. An example of a very real problem in the fire service today. Dealing with recruits who do not have a basic understanding of how to interact with their environment.