Fireworks possible cause for Dayton car explosion, victim’s condition improving

DAYTON — A man who suffered critical injuries when his car exploded by what police believe were fireworks remains in the hospital, but his condition is improving.

Keshawn Rivers, 38, remains at Miami Valley Hospital in Serious condition, according to a spokesperson.

Dayton police detectives continue to investigate the incident in the 3300 block of Delphos Avenue, saying they are awaiting the result s of a lab analysis for confirmation that the explosion was caused by fireworks, the release said.

It’s too early in the investigation to determine what Rivers was doing in the car just before the explosion occurred or if he was impaired in any way, the release said. But detectives are still evaluating evidence and statements related to this case, and they are considering criminal charges, according to the release.

Thomas Maddox, one of several people who pulled Rivers from the burning car on the Fourth of July, was grilling when fireworks inside the vehicle exploded.

“I saw a young man in a car and I saw a life in that car, and I helped that life get out of that car because that car was catching on fire,” he said. “I pray that he’s okay and I pray that everyone who was injured was okay.”

Maddox said the explosion sounded more like a bomb going off than fireworks. A skylight on the vehicle flew off in the explosion, striking Maddox’s vehicle, which set off the airbags inside and knocked off his rearview mirror.

Maddox didn’t know the victim, Keshawn Rivers, but other people at the party were friends with him. He said the incident was a terrible accident.

“It’s just a mishap that happened and that was it,” he said. “There was nothing targeted. We’re not in a war. It was an accident.”

There were several other people outside near the scene that suffered minor injuries during the incident, officials said.

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