An explosive device set off at a gender-reveal party ignited a wildfire and resulted in the expectant parents being charged a $500 fine, according to authorities.
However, according to Global News, when the target was hit, it sparked a fire that grew to roughly an acre in size.
The resulting fire was eventually put out with the help of 10 wildland firefighters and support staff, who worked alongside firefighters from the local municipality, according to Travis Fairweather, a wildfire information officer with Alberta Wildfire, who spoke to the outlet.
Following the incident, Fairweather told CP24 that those in charge of the party, who have not been named, had been issued a CA$600 fine and may have to pay the cost of putting out the fire.
Fairweather also noted that Alberta requires individuals to receive written permission to use fireworks or exploding targets after the law was amended in 2017.
“We were seeing enough of these exploding targets that it did require us to change the Forest Prairie Protection Act,” he told the outlet. “Fireworks and exploding targets - they can be fun, but they can also come with a hefty price tag if you end up inadvertently starting a wildfire.”
According to Fairweather, the blaze marked the third wildfire this year caused by an exploding target, although he noted that not all of the cases have been linked to gender-reveal parties.
In 2020, 88 per cent of the 704 wildfires in Alberta were caused by humans, according to the Canadian province’s Alberta Wildfire website.
This is not the first time that a party aimed at revealing the sex of an unborn child has resulted in a wildfire, as officials previously linked the cause of the deadly 2020 El Dorado Fire in California, which spread over more than 22,000 acres, to a gender-reveal party that saw attendees use a smoke-generating pyrotechnic device.