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A steel grass roller blew up after it was put on a Mosgiel bonfire early this morning, sending up to six people to hospital with minor burns.
The fire service and St John attended the incident on Dukes Rd North, about 1.30am.
The explosion caused the clothing of six partygoers to catch fire, causing status two and three burn injuries to three people.
The fire also spread to a hedge. Partygoers jumped in a pond to put out the flames.
A Fire Service spokesman said the roller had water inside it, which exploded when it heated up.
Resident Vivienne Patrick insisted the explosion was minor.
"We're all fine, it was a non-event, it just looked really spectacular with lots of flashing lights."
However, the it did kill a chicken, which she said died of fright.
"There was one fatality: it was the chicken, Mabel, it got a fright," she said.
"They're having a wake for it now - she's on the menu for tea tonight."
Fire trucks were used to help take the patients to Dunedin Hospital, including two who had status two burns to their face, arms and legs.