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Fireworks blamed for blaze
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On the eve of the Fourth of July, fireworks are suspected in sparking a blaze that threatened Westside Manor apartments yesterday.McMinnville firefighters responded to the fire that burned grass and a wooden fence at the playground, then charged toward the nearby apartments. The quick response by firefighters prevented what was nearly a structure fire.Several burnt firecrackers were found around the source of the blaze, cementing suspicions fireworks were to blame.Fire officials have warned local residents to use extreme caution when igniting fireworks due to the severely dry conditions, although no fireworks ban was issued locally.However, McMinnville Fire Chief Randy Walker did stop issuing burn permits, effective June 28, as a result of dry conditions. Walker says fireworks are responsible for 2-of-5 fires on the Fourth of July.