RUSH TOWNSHIP – No injuries were reported after a pick-up truck caught fire at 5 p.m. Thursday along U.S. Route 322 west of East Pine Street in Rush Township, Centre County, the Philipsburg-based state police reported.
A Dodge Ram operated by Amanda J. Reed, 30, of Frenchville was loaded with bales of hay. In addition, it was pulling a horse trailer fully-loaded with hay. The hay was placed up against two vertical, unshielded exhaust pipes that were inside the rear bed of the pick-up truck.
State police said the temperature of the heated exhaust caused the hay that it was in contact with to ignite. Reed continued to travel westbound afterward, causing the fire to spread throughout the loaded bed area.
At some point, Reed’s truck was brought to a controlled stop along the northern shoulder of Route 322. Its rear sustained major fire damage, while the horse trailer wasn’t damaged. The Philipsburg Fire Department and emergency medical services responded to the scene.