A 3-alarm wedding fire ripped through a popular wedding venue outside Boston after a reception guest tossed a cigarette into some vegetation.
The fire took place at the historic Lakeview Pavillion in Foxborough, Massachusetts. The fire department was called to the venue at close to 7 pm on Saturday, finding that flames were shooting through the roof of the building.
The 3-alarm wedding fire would grow so powerful that the roof partially collapsed, and it took firefighters three hours in total to get it under control. Foxborough Deputy Fire Chief Steven Bagley said 75 firefighters were called to the scene over the course of the fight.
Bagley said the battle against the roaring fire was more difficult because the wedding hall didn’t have sprinklers. Firefighters were forced to take water from a nearby pond.
The fire broke out just as the bride and groom were walking down the center aisle at the end of the ceremony.
“I had literally just pronounced them husband and wife, and they proceeded down the center aisle with the groomsmen and bridesmaids,” Justice of the Peace Jerry Cibley told WCVB.
The 150 people in attendance were able to make it to safety.
Authorities said the 3-alarm wedding fire was sparked when one of the guests tossed a post-ceremony cigarette.
“We believe somebody had accidentally caused the fire by discarding the cigarette into some mulch,” Bagley said.
The 3-alarm wedding fire could have been much worse. In 2012, a wedding in Saudi Arabia turned into tragedy when a guest sparked a fire that killed 23 people. Authorities said celebratory gunfire brought down an electrical cable, electrocuting some guests and sparking a fire that killed others.
Authorities have not said if there would be any charges in relation to the 3-alarm wedding fire in Massachusetts.