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Homeowner trying to smoke out a snake infestation ends up burning down $1 million home

No one was hurt — and the well-being of the snakes was ‘undetermined,’ a fire official said.

The remains of a home in Poolesville, Md., about 25 miles from Washington, D.C., after a fire that the homeowner accidentally set off while trying to smoke out snakes from the house.
The remains of a home in Poolesville, Md., about 25 miles from Washington, D.C., after a fire that the homeowner accidentally set off while trying to smoke out snakes from the house.
Montgomery County Fire Rescue Service via AP

POOLESVILLE, Md. — A home near Washington, D.C., was accidentally burned to the ground by an owner who was trying to get rid of a snake infestation, officials said.

The homeowner in Poolesville, a town about 25 miles outside of Washington, was trying to smoke out the snakes from the house, according to Montgomery County Fire Department officials.

In the process, the homeowner caught the house on fire, causing what officials said was about $1 million in damage.

The fire broke out around 10 p.m. on Nov. 23, officials said.

Pete Piringer, a spokesman for the county fire department, said the fire, which began in the basement, was caused by placing coals too close to combustible material.

Pringer said no one was hurt — and that the well-being of the snakes was “undetermined.”