A California man set his parents’ home on fire by using a blowtorch to try and kill black widow spiders, according to the Fresno Fire Department.
The 23-year-old man was house sitting for his parents when he is thought to have used a blow torch on the exterior of the Fresno home in a bid to kill the venomous spiders, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The fire caused damage to the properties’ second storey and attic and was attended by fire officers at around 11pm on Tuesday evening.
Although the exact cause has not been determined, fire crews believe the blow torch is to blame.
The son is understood to have been using the blow torch on the exterior of the home to try and exterminate the creatures.
It is thought that the brick work had a slight crack in it which allowed the flames to seep through and cause the interior of the property to set alight.
The occupants weren’t home at the time of the fire and nobody was injured in the blaze, which was attended by more than two dozen fire officers.
The young man also managed to escape the blaze which took place in the Woodward Lake housing development unscathed.
The house fire happened Tuesday night at a home in the Woodward Lake housing development.
The fire department have since issued an appeal on Facebook for people to avoid using this method, they wrote: ‘Please don’t use a blowtorch to kill spiders.’
Capt. Robert Castillo of the Fresno Fire Department told the Times: ‘This is definitely not the preferred method to exterminate spiders in and around your home.’
Black widow spiders, among the world’s deadliest arachnids, are commonly found in populated areas of California.
This type of spider isn’t aggressive and their bites are rare but can be extremely painful.
The black widow spider gets its name from its mating behavior. After mating, the females typically kill and then eat their male partners, leaving them as ‘widows.’