Driver stuck in mud burned alive after SUV catches fire in east Harris County

By Lea Wilson - Digital News Editor

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas - A driver was killed Monday in a vehicle fire in east Harris County.

Deputies said the person was speeding in a 1999 red Ford Explorer in the 700 block of Shields Street when the driver took a sharp turn too fast, ended up in a ditch, and got stuck in the mud.

The driver tried to accelerate the vehicle out of the ditch but was unsuccessful, deputies said. The effort of trying to get free from the mud caused a mechanical malfunction and the SUV went up in flames, deputies said.

The driver was unable to escape.

Deputies said the body was so badly burned they were not able to identify it.

Deputies said it is unclear why the SUV was sunken so deep in the mud.

"The ditch (was) full of water from earlier rain and wet," Ryan Musil with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office said. “(The) driver is trying to get out and sinks the back end even further into the mud."

The arson unit was called to investigate but deputies said it appears to be a freak accident.

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