A one-acre grass fire that brought three firefighting agencies to Lexington Tuesday afternoon may have been started by a group of high school students, according to the Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Office.
“A witness stated that approximately five to 10 high-school-aged males were seen running from the area after reportedly detonating a mortar type device,” a sheriff’s report stated.
The fire, which was located in dredge spoils near 141 Cowlitz Drive, spread quickly because “it’s unusual dry out there for this time of year,” said sheriff’s spokesman Charlie Rosenzweig.
Firefighters from Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue, Cowlitz Fire District 5, and the Department of Natural Resources responded to put out the fire.
No one was injured and no buildings were damaged. The affected area is slightly north of the Lexington Bridge and adjacent to the Cowlitz River.
Deputies searched the area but could not find the suspects, Rosenzweig said.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Sergeant Andy Nunes at (360) 577-3092.
People who wish to remain anonymous can do so using their smart phones and the tip411 app.
A DNR fire investigator has been requested to determine the cause of the fire.