Arson suspected, then rejected, in rash of Anoka County grass fires


Investigators who initially suspected arson in a rash of Anoka County grassfires now say a car's faulty exhaust system is the more likely cause.

Firefighters near Andover battled as many as 10 grass fires Saturday afternoon, KARE 11 reports.

Anoka County Dispatch said the first reported fire was near Bunker Lake Boulevard and Hanson Boulevard around 5 p.m. About nine other fires were reported in the area within an hour.

Fortunately, the fires didn't cause any injuries or structural damage.

"It appears with a pretty high level of certainty that we had arsonists starting wildfires," Andover Fire Chief Dan Winkel told the Pioneer Press.

KSTP has aerial video from the scene below:

Local media also reported grass fires in Wyoming, Minn., and Bloomington on Saturday.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says burning restrictions are in place for Anoka, Chisago, Dakota, Hennepin, Isanti, Pine, Ramsey, Sherburne, Washington and Wright counties.

Next Up


Grass fire triggers evacuations in Anoka County

Fire crews from at least three municipalities were called to the scene to put down the flames. A lack of moisture is contributing to tinder-dry conditions across the Twin Cities and the state of Minnesota.

Bear sightings on increase in Anoka County town of Ramsey

Bear sightings are on the increase in the Anoka County town of Ramsey. KARE 11 reports that that Ramsey police have received so many calls of bears in the area that they've put up signs warning residents. One resident even snapped a picture of a bear cub eating from her bird feeder.