Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Car catches fire at beach in Meadows in Northampton

About a half-dozen people who drove in two vehicles to an area in the Meadows called Rainbow Beach tried to put the fire out either by driving or pushing the Jeep partway into the Connecticut River, Deputy Fire Chief Stephen Vanasse said. The vehicle was sitting on the edge of the river when firefighters arrived around 8:30 p.m.

Firefighters used portable fire extinguishers, sand and water from the river to douse the blaze.

Vanasse said the area is primarily used for agriculture and has some access roads used by farmers, but roads do not go as far as the beach.

“That area is highly inaccessible,” Vanasse said. “It’s a wonder they got down there.”

Officers from the Northampton Police Department also responded to the scene, and the incident is under the investigation by the state Environmental Police. Vanasse said that department will have to coordinate with a towing company to remove the Jeep.

There were no injuries, and no information was available about whether the vehicle’s owner will be charged.

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