Palm trees spark brush fire along Lemon Grove trolley tracks

LEMON GROVE -- Heartland Fire-Rescue crews battled a small brush fire after palm trees were set ablaze near a Lemon Grove trolley station Sunday evening.

Heartland Fire said the blaze broke out in a brushy area on the 1500 block of San Altos Place around 5 p.m., near the Massachusetts Avenue trolley stop. They arrived to find two palm tree crowns on fire near a house. The fire traveled along the trolley tracks and brush, briefly threatening about 20 homes, according to fire officials.

Heartland firefighters had help from Cal Fire, San Diego Fire and San Miguel Fire crews and contained the blaze within about 40 minutes, allowing only minor damage to fences, power lines, railroad ties and the eaves of some homes.

The fire interrupted service to the Massachusetts station for several hours, and trolleys to the area remained closed as of 8 p.m. Sunday.

The cause of the fire is under investigation by the San Diego Sheriff's Bomb and Arson division.