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Two accused of starting Pilot Butte fire with illegal firework

The blaze at Pilot Butte shut U.S. Highway 20, cut power to 27,000 people and led to the evacuation of some apartments.

Posted: Jul. 5, 2018 4:11 PM

BEND, Ore. (AP) -- Bend police arrested two men accused of setting off an illegal firework that ignited a Fourth of July wildfire.

KTVZ reports the blaze at Pilot Butte shut U.S. Highway 20, cut power to 27,000 people and led to the evacuation of some apartments.

The fire damaged the east and south lower slopes of the nearly 500-foot lava dome and also ignited spot fires across Highway 20 that crews quickly extinguished.

Bend police Lt. Clint Burleigh says witnesses provided excellent descriptions of the people and vehicles that were in the area just before the fire started.

Investigators arrested 38-year-old Brandon Hastings and 29-year-old Alan Stout, both of Bend, on charges of reckless burning.

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