Andrew Pestano

Fireworks-Related Incidents Kill Two South Florida Men

A 36-year-old Pompano Beach man died in a fireworks-related incident on the Fourth of July when he put a mortar shell inside a PVC pipe, according to officials.

The incident occurred at about 10 p.m. at 2930 NW 5th Street on Thursday when he was setting off fireworks in his apartment complex's parking lot. Family members identified the man as Tavaris Hamilton. 

"He placed a PVC pipe partially in the ground and put an approximate 3” mortar shell inside," the City of Pompano Beach said in a statement. "He lit the explosive and it detonated before he moved away from the device."

Hamilton suffered severe injuries to his shoulder, neck and head. He died at Broward Health North in Deerfield Beach from his injuries, officials said.

In a separate incident, a 32-year-old man died when a Roman candle exploded in his hand at the 1600 block of NW 13th Street in Fort Lauderdale Thursday night.

Another incident also occurred in Pompano Beach at about 10 p.m. Thursday in which a 15-year-old boy was lighting a 24-inch Roman candle when it exploded in his hand.

"He lost several fingers and possibly his entire right hand as a result of the accident," the city added.

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