SAN DIEGO — Residents in a City Heights neighborhood got a scare Wednesday when an electrical problem on the patio outside home sparked a fire that threatened to spread to an open field.
The blaze caused an estimated $150,000 worth of property damage and left four people in need of interim lodging.
“The flames were just shooting straight up right next to my fence, going up a tree. It was absolutely horrifying,” said resident Bart Barney.
The fire burned into his neighbor Myra’s house, invading her kitchen and the attic, Barney said.
“I screamed, ‘Myra, your house is on fire, so get home now!’ and then I called 911,” he said.
The non-injury fire in the 3600 block of Myrtle Avenue erupted about 2 p.m., according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.
As the flames burned the home, neighbors watched with concern.
“Before I saw the smoke, I heard a big boom,” resident Patricia Stennett said.
Several nearby homes were evacuated for precaution.
Firefighter’s rescued five cats and dogs from the burning house. The homeowner and her son were not home at the time.
The flames also engulfed a camper parked alongside it, SDFRD spokesman Lee Swanson said. It took crews about 35 minutes to bring the blaze under control.
The American Red Cross was called in to help the displaced residents arrange for temporary housing.
Investigators set the monetary losses at $50,000 each to the structure, its contents and the recreational vehicle, Swanson said.