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Rollover in Rainier causes brush fire

Suspect fled crash scene, but arrested an hour later


PHOTO COURTESY OF COLUMBIA RIVER FIRE AND RESCUE - Columbia River Fire and Rescue crews spent an hour and a half on scene in Rainier on Friday, Aug. 26, putting out a brush fire caused by a rollover car crash. The man driving the vehicle fled the scene, but was later arrested by Columbia County Sheriff's Office deputies. Emergency response crews were called to the scene of a single-vehicle rollover in Rainier on Friday, Aug. 26, that triggered a brush fire, burning more than a quarter acre.

At 9:10 p.m., fire crews were dispatched to the 74000 block of Apiary Road where Columbia River Fire and Rescue found a vehicle flipped on its roof. Flames were seen coming from the bottom of the vehicle. The blaze had also spread to the surrounding area before firefighters were able to contain it.

CRFR crews also reported the driver of the vehicle was able to escape and was not at the scene when they arrived.

Firefighters worked for an hour and a half to extinguish the fire and mop up hot spots. No structures were damaged or threatened by the fire, according to a release from the department.

Damage to the vehicle was estimated to be approximately $5,000.

At 10:44 p.m., the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office received a suspicious persons call around milepost two of Apiary Road. James Bowen, 29, of Rainier was arrested in connection with the crash. Police logs indicated Bowen was also cited for DUII, reckless driving and hit and run.

A second person was reported to be in the vehicle at the time, but was not cited.