Sparta man rescued from burning vehicle

Vehicle fire ignited hay field

A Sparta man was pulled from his burning vehicle by a passerby after a crash on Highway 16 on Tuesday.

Kenneth Clark, 22, was driving east on Highway 16 at Hammer Road around 3:20 p.m. when he crossed the center line, drove into a ditch and hit a culvert, sending his vehicle flying into a hay field.

Clark’s vehicle caught fire, which ignited the hay field.

The Monroe County Sheriff’s Department said a passerby who witnessed the crash was able to pull Clark from the vehicle before it was engulfed in flames.

Clark was taken to Mayo Clinic Health System in Sparta with head injuries, and was later transferred to Mayo in La Crosse. He was treated and released.

The crash is under investigation.

Sparta Rural Fire Department Chief Mike Arnold said the fire burned about a half-acre of land. His department had two trucks there, one for the vehicle fire and a second with firefighters trained in forest and grass fires to put out the fire in the field.