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Family escapes uninjured from burning home

SAN DIEGO — A family of four escaped their burning home Wednesday morning in San Diego’s Pacific Highlands Ranch neighborhood near Carmel Valley, but their garage and two vehicles were destroyed by the fire and smoke damaged much of the home, causing a loss of about a quarter-million dollars, authorities said.

The blaze, reported about 4:15 a.m., prompted fire crews to evacuate several nearby homes in the 15000 block of Sierra Rose Trail near Blue Dawn Trail, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department officials said. No injuries were reported.

Firefighters arrived to the upscale community near Carmel Valley to find flames and heavy smoke spewing from the garage of the home, SDFD spokesman Monica Munoz said. The crews quickly worked to evacuate nearby homes and search the burning house, though they later learned the two adults and two children who lived there had already evacuated safely.

Fire crews knocked down the flames by 4:40 a.m. and extinguished a hot spot that flared up a few hours later.

According to reporters at the scene, the home was equipped with new smoke alarms that alerted the family and allowed them plenty of time to escape unharmed. Personnel from the American Red Cross responded to assist the family find temporary shelter, Munoz said.

“Fortunately, no one was hurt and the damage was mostly confined to the garage, with a bit of extension into the second-floor bedroom above the garage,” Munoz said. “The combination of the fire door between the garage and the home, and quick action by firefighters, saved the first floor of this home from burning.”

Two vehicles in the garage were destroyed and there was smoke damage throughout the house, Munoz said. Investigators estimate the fire caused $150,000 worth of structural damage and destroyed contents valued at $100,000.

Metro Arson Strike Team investigators were on scene Wednesday morning but were unable to determine what caused the blaze.