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Local fire departments see grass fire action; Battle Creek man dies while burning brush

COLDWATER (WTVB) - There isn’t a lot of green showing yet on the ground but grassfire season has started with two more yesterday in Branch County with Coldwater and Bronson firefighters being called out Wednesday. Also, a brush fire yesterday took the life of a 93-year old man in Battle Creek. The alarm in Coldwater came in around 3 p.m. from 860 Gordons Lane. And then around 4:15, Bronson firemen went to Bethel Township to douse a blaze on property along Hatmaker Road. No injuries were reported. 

However, a 93-year-old Battle Creek man yesterday was burning brush at his property at Minges and Sonoma Roads when a grass fire ignited the oil and gasoline in his lawn tractor.   A neighbor heard an explosion, looked out and saw smoke and found the victim lying dead next to the tractor. He was the second west Michigan man to die this week.  70-year-old Roger Kludy of Hart suffered severe burns when a brush fire spread to his clothing on Monday. He also subsequently died.  A grassfire in near Paw Paw is being blamed for destroying three barns and threatening a home Wednesday.