082010 rock fire
Clinton Rural Fire Lt. Brian Vibbert soaks a hot spot in the burned area along Interstate 90 near the Rock Creek exit Thursday evening. Photo by ROB CHANEY/Missoulian ROB CHANEY/Missoulian

CLINTON - A broken wheel bearing was suspected for sparking several fires along the edge of Interstate 90 on Thursday evening.

Members of the Clinton Rural Volunteer Fire Department and the state Department of Natural Resources sprayed water on dozens of hot spots along the westbound lane of the freeway between the Rock Creek exit and a roadside parking area two miles to the east.

"It's burned for a couple hundred yards along here," Clinton Rural Fire Lt. Brian Vibbert said as he hosed down some blackened brush. "We chasing smoke all down the road."

The suspect vehicle was not found. Firefighters were called out about 7 p.m. and had all of the flames out by 8 p.m. No buildings were damaged, although some fence lines got scorched.

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