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Suspicious fire burns 82 hay bales in Saline Co.

SALINA, Kan. (AP) -- A fire that destroyed 82 large, round hay bales in central Kansas is being investigated as a case of arson.

The Salina Journal reports ( ) firefighters were called to the field in rural Saline County around 1:45 a.m. Sunday.

Sheriff Glen Kochanowski says the fire was so advanced that it couldn't be extinguished and burned for nearly three hours.

The total loss is estimated at more than $16,000.

Authorities said the fire appeared to have been set in two places. There were also reports that the headlights of a vehicle had been seen in the area.