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April 17, 2017 06:50 AM

Arson Suspected In Madison County Bridge Fire

Winterset, IA

Investigators in Iowa believe that an iconic bridge featured in a best-selling novel and film adaptation was burned by arson.

When crews arrived at about 6 a.m. Saturday, they found the Cedar Bridge engulfed in flames. It took about two hours to extinguish the flames, after which investigators found signs that arson was responsible for the fire.

"At that point, they're just trying to save it as much as possible, keep it standing, so we can preserve evidence. No lives were in danger or anything like that," Madison County Sheriff Jason Barnes said.

Back in 2002, the town of Winterset as well as the county raised money to rebuild the bridge after another case of arson burned it down 15 years ago. But with an estimated price tag exceeding $1 million, it might not be as easy for locals to recover the bridge featured in print and film.

The popular novel "Bridges of Madison County," written Robert James Waller, sold 60 million copies after its release in 1992. Three years later, Meryl Streep starred with director Clint Eastwood in the film version of the novel.

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