In what Hinesville Police Department Det. Kyle Larimore is calling an unfortunate accident, two children and one adult sustained burns after gasoline was used to expand a bonfire.
One child, who is reported to be 6, is in critical condition. The other, who is 9, underwent surgery Friday night and is expected to recover, according to Hinesville FD spokesman Kris Johanson.
The incident occurred about 7 p.m. Friday when friends and family gathered to build a bonfire at a residence in the 900 block of Primrose Lane in Hinesville.
"Apparently gasoline was being used and it exploded somehow. We aren't 100 percent sure right now, it's still under investigation," Larimore said. "Two children and one adult were burned from it."
Johanson said the adult, who is 30, was treated for minor burns but traveled in LifeStar with the children because one of them is his.
Larimore said four Hinesville Police Units arrived in 3-4 minutes of receiving the call. A Hinesville Fire truck and first responders were also dispatched. Johansen said after the initial response more fire units were sent to set up a helicopter-ambulance landing area at Snelson-Golden Middle School, which is near the fire.
Larimore said EMS personnel treated the burn victims and the children were flown by LifeStar to the Augusta Burn Center.
Larimore confirmed it was an adult who poured the gas onto the bonfire.
The bonfire did not pose a threat to nearby homes and was quickly contained.
The detective said he doesn't anticipate any criminal charges.
"Right now it's just an accidental injury, but with people getting hurt from it, we do investigate it a little further," he said.
He said he was not able to release the names of the victims pending the completion of the investigation which is also being conducted by the fire department.
"It's a joint investigation in that there was a fire involved so we are getting together and see where we go from here," he said. "Right now I'm not releasing any of that information."