Mower sparks grass fire in East County

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ALPINE, Calif. — A mowing machine sparked a hillside grass fire that blackened about three open acres in the East County highlands Thursday, authorities said.

The blaze off the 2100 block of Twisted Oak Lane in Alpine was reported about 1 p.m., according to Cal Fire.

Ground crews were able to get the flames under control within about 20 minutes, despite prevailing gusty winds and dry atmospheric conditions, said Daryll Pina, a battalion chief with the state agency. Two air tankers and two water-dropping helicopters were dispatched, but then were called back before arriving.

The fire briefly threatened a home on top of the slope but caused no structural damage or injuries and necessitated no evacuations, Pina said.

The person who inadvertently ignited the blaze could wind up getting a citation, he said.

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