A man set himself on fire Wednesday near the White House with shocking footage showing him engulfed in flames, the Secret Service said.
Shocking footage of the incident was posted showing the unidentified individual walking calmly across a lawn south of the White House as he is fully engulfed in flames.
Several seconds later, staff run towards him with a fire extinguisher to quell the flames, with the incident happening less than a mile from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
He managed to stand upright before officials got to him, amid reports that he was wearing a protective suit which would have shielded him from catastrophic burns and even death.
It is currently not known what condition he is in but it is believed that he was transported to a nearby hospital.
More than 70 officers swarmed to the area from multiple agencies. Several tourists and visitors were in the vicinity, but there were no other injuries.
A spokesman for the Washington Fire Department told CNBC: ‘I can confirm that we’ve transported one patient with burns from the Ellipse and we’re now on the scene assisting law enforcement.’
President’s Park Police and U.S. Secret Service officers also assisted at the scene to try and establish what happened in Washington D.C.
The Secret Service had no comment other than referring to the agency’s tweet about the incident when contacted by CNBC.
White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said he could not immediately comment.
In a tweet the U.S. Secret Service said: ‘At approximately 12:20 p.m. a man lit himself on fire on the Ellipse near 15th and Constitution Ave., Secret Service personnel are on scene assisting and in rendering first aid.’
The Ellipse is a 52-acre park located south of the White House fence and north of Constitution Avenue and the National Mall.