Brush fire threatens homes in East County

Data pix.

SAN DIEGO  -- A wildfire spread over brushy terrain and threatened homes Wednesday in a rural area of eastern San Diego County north of Lake Jennings.

The blaze started for unknown reasons off the 14000 block of Willow Road in Lakeside shortly before 12:30 p.m., according to Cal Fire.

Within in about an hour, crews were able to halt the spread of the fire at about two acres, the state agency reported. A short time later, however, flames erupted again near the initial burn area and began moving across more open terrain toward about 20 nearby residences.

Authorities evacuated about eight of the threatened homes as ground and airborne crews worked to douse the flames. Besides the crews on the ground, two air tankers from Ramona dropped fire retardant and two helicopters dropped water on the flames.

As of 2 p.m., the blaze had grown to roughly 20 acres, according to Cal Fire. By late evening, crews said the fire had grown to about 50 acres but that they had stopped the flames from spreading. No structural damage or injuries were reported.

"This fire was burning primarily in in light flashy fuels and grasses and that can lead to some explosive rates of spread," Cal Fire spokesman Issac Sanchez said.  "Due to an aggressive attack from the air and the ground we were able to stop the forward spread."

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