CHELAN — A 17-year-old boy suffered third-degree burns after allegedly starting a fire to escape being arrested at the Lake Chelan Rodeo Grounds on Sunday.
The boy is suspected to have stolen a 2005 Toyota Corolla on Sunday, Chelan County Chief Chris Foreman said. The owner of the car located the vehicle at 1:35 p.m. on Union Valley Road and called Chelan County Sheriff’s deputies.
Deputies pursued the vehicle and the boy came to a stop at the rodeo grounds, Foreman said. The boy ran into the fairgrounds and hid in a 20-by-20 foot stable, he said.
Deputies approached the stable and heard movement inside. They went to open the stable doors and were blasted backward by a backdraft.
A backdraft is caused by the sudden introduction of air into an enclosed space where a fire has been lit, according to the United States Fire Administration. It can cause the fire to expand quickly.
The boy then attempted to flee by foot, but he gave up and was taken into custody by deputies, Foreman said. Deputies determined the boy had received third-degree burns and he was taken to Harborview Medical Center. The deputies were not injured.
The boy was arrested on suspicion of possession of a stolen vehicle and arson, Foreman said.
A 28-year-old woman who was a passenger in the vehicle did not flee. She is not facing charges.
The fire itself was limited and somewhat contained by the staff at the rodeo grounds before firefighters arrived, said Chelan County District 7 Fire Chief Mark Donnell. No horses were in the stable at the time and no one else was injured.
It is unclear how the fire was started, but there was a small gas can for tools inside the shed, Donnell said.
One engine, a tender, a heavy brush rig, a rescue vehicle and about a dozen firefighters responded to the incident.
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