Authorities say a man has suffered third-degree burns over half of his body while trying to melt a plastic jug full of gasoline in a Northern California parking lot.     

The Modesto Bee says it happened Wednesday night in a Target store parking lot.     

Authorities say the man was using a lighter to melt the mouth of a gallon water jug into the shape of funnel to make it easier to pour the fuel into his car.     

Instead, the jug exploded in flames. The man and a nearby car also caught fire.     

Bystanders helped douse the burning man.     

But fire Battalion Chief Darin Jesburg says the front half of the man’s body was burned from his face to his feet and his shoes melted.     

He was airlifted to a hospital.

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