The Great Bend Fire department was busy over the weekend dealing with four fire-related calls beginning on Friday.
The first two blazes took place Friday and were caused by same bus traveling between Great Bend and Larned, Great Bend Fire Chief Mike Napolitano said. The bus had an exhaust system malfunction which was causing sparks as it traveled down the highway.
The first fire was reported at 5:37 p.m. Units responded to a the 800 block of west U.S. 56 and found an area of grass burning in the ditch.
The second was reported at 8:26 p.m. when the same bus was traveling back to Larned from Great Bend, the chief said. Firefighters responded to the 200 Block of west U.S. 56 for ditch fires and found a fire in the north ditch with the wind pushing the flames.
They were able to stop the forward progress of the blaze and extinguish it. A Barton County Sheriff Office deputy assisted at the scene and the bus was not allowed to be driven back to Larned due the unsafe condition, Napolitano said.
The third fire was reported at 5:32 p.m. on Saturday when firefighters responded to a report of a vehicle fire at SW 5 Ave. and Railroad Ave. They found a 2001 Pontiac Grand Am with flames coming from under the hood. The fire was contained to the engine compartment of the vehicle.
The last fire was reported at 9:46 a.m. on Sunday. Units responded to 701 Morton for a structure fire.
Responders found a 1998 Dodge Stratus on the south side of the residence with flames showing in the engine compartment. The fire was quickly extinguished and the vehicle was a total loss.
Napolitano said the house was not involved.