PLAINFIELD — A Sterling man was listed in critical condition Thursday night in the intensive care unit at William W. Backus Hospital in Norwich after a piece of shrapnel was blown into his chest after a fireworks explosion, Plainfield police said.

Damon Luberto, 34, was with a friend, Eric Bergeron, 36, of Cumberland, R.I., when the pair apparently put a bundle of bottle rockets into what was described to police as an umbrella holder. They lit a four-inch fuse attached to the bottle rockets, then ran for cover in a nearby tree line, police said.

As they reached the tree line and turned around, police said, the bottle rockets malfunctioned and exploded, propelling the piece of shrapnel into Luberto's chest about 6:30 p.m. at 4 Pickett Road.

Police said they are investigating.