DEC. 5 — A boat owner in Jamestown, Calif., was recently fixing the hubcaps of his boat trailer when he discovered a colony of wasps residing in one of the hubs. Grabbing an aerosol can of Pledge furniture polish and a lighter, he attempted to create a makeshift blow torch to kill the swarm, according to a report in The Log, southern California’s boating and fishing newspaper.
In the end, however, it turned out to be a bad plan that was poorly executed.
The can caught fire and the man, in an effort to save his trailer, threw the can into nearby grass. The fire began to spread and managed to consume the man’s trailer, mobile home, boat, truck and a nearby outbuilding, according to a report in My Mother Lode, a local area newspaper.
Units that responded to the fire consisted of an Air Attack helicopter, a fire-extinguishing air tanker from the Columbia Air Base, local firefighters, and CALFIRE crewmembers, according to the report. The blaze charred roughly 1 acre of land while the offending wasps flew away.
There were no injuries except to the man’s wallet — the price tag for all the property damage was roughly $45,000.
— Elizabeth Ellis