A semi-trailer fire on I-90 east of Ellensburg backed-up traffic westbound for hours Monday morning. 

Washington State Patrol Trooper Colin Cumaravel says the fire started after a brake malfunction. 

"The brakes on the rear trailer froze up and caused the fire, and then caused the back-up," said Cumaravel. "It was still in lane one, the right lane." 

Troopers were called to the scene shortly after 5am, and the westbound lanes were completely closed for about an hour between 5:15am and 6:15am. 

The semi ended up blocking the right lane for more than four hours, and traffic continued to be backed up in the area. 

Trooper Cumaravel says the malfunction with the semi-trailer is not a commonplace occurrence. 

"It's pretty rare, but with trailer brakes, once in a while there's a malfunction that can cause a fire," Cumaravel  said. "The brakes seize up, and then overheat, and then catch fire." 

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