OCEANSIDE, Calif. -- Marijuana had been growing inside a garage that caught fire at an Oceanside rental home late Thursday night, officials said.
No one was home when firefighters got to the house on Carolyn Circle about 11:40 p.m. They found flames and heavy smoke coming from the garage, Oceanside fire Battalion Chief Greg DeAvila said in a news release.
Firefighters made sure the house was empty and found that thick smoke from the garage had spread into the kitchen, causing additional crews to help battle the blaze.
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Fire crews were able to get the fire under control in about 20 minutes, keeping the flames from spreading further into the house, DeAvila said. No damage estimate was given.
He said firefighters found a suspicious growing operation at the home. A police official said marijuana had been growing inside the garage, but was burned in the fire so it wasn’t immediately clear how many plants were there.
Mary Ceaton, who lives next door, says she saw the fire when it first started.
"I saw a big flame," said Ceaton. "I came outside to look and there was already a police officer walking up to my door to get me out of the house ... I got scared because I thought our house was going to catch on fire, but police got us out of the house and also the neighbor on the other side of the home."