Photos show how close 18-acre Santee fire came to homes


SANTEE, Calif. — A fire in Santee spread to 18 acres on Thanksgiving Day, forcing evacuation warnings as the flames came uncomfortably close to some homes.

Onscene.TV captured video of residents and first responders working to protect property as the fire threatened houses near Ramsgate Drive and Hillcreek Road. One man grabbed a hose to douse flames that came within inches of a back patio. A second piece of footage showed firefighters running hoses through backyards as evacuation warning alerts went out to residents.

“I am evacuating my family right now,” resident Carlo Kalosian said. “I just heard the helicopter telling us to evacuate and I turn around and my whole backyard is on fire.”

The fire was somewhat difficult to reach, according to Santee Fire Battalion Chief Kyle Moyneur, and Santa Ana conditions heightened the threat. Planes and helicopters made airdrops on the blaze as firefighters attacked it from the ground.

By 1 p.m., Santee Fire said the forward rate of spread was stopped at 18 acres. No damage to homes was reported, though an outbuilding may have sustained damage, a battalion chief said.

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