WASHINGTON – A man set himself on fire on Wednesday in a Washington park just outside the fence surrounding the White House.
The incident occurred about 12:20 pm in the Ellipse, a park south of the White House and north of Constitution Avenue and the National Mall.
“Secret Service agents responded in seconds, put out the fire and began to administer first aid,” a spokesman for the agency, Jeffrey Adams, told EFE.
The unnamed man was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment of his burns, according to the Secret Service, the agency responsible for the security of the president and his family.
No further information has been disclosed.
Secret Service agents intervened on April 12 after a man in wheelchair set fire to his jacket near one of the entrances to the White House.
“A male subject operating an electronic wheelchair-type scooter lit his outer jacket on fire while sitting along Pennsylvania Ave. outside the North Fence Line,” the Secret Service said at the time on Twitter. “Uniformed Division Officers immediately responded, extinguished the fire and rendered first aid.”
While President Donald Trump was inside the White House at the time of the incident, he was never in any danger, authorities said.
A man fatally shot himself outside the White House in March 2018.
Trump and first lady Melania Trump were en route to the president’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida on that occasion.
The shooting came about a week after woman apparently suffering from mental disorders crashed her vehicle into one of the security barricades that protect the presidential residence just minutes after the end of a joint press conference by Trump and the prime minister of Australia.
Two similar incidents took place in March 2017.
On March 10, a man identified as Jonathan T. Tran climbed over the White House fence carrying pepper spray and moved around in the gardens and yard for almost 17 minutes before being arrested.
Eighteen days later, the Secret Service arrested a man carrying a package and making suspicious remarks near the White House.