SAN DIEGO — About 60 firefighters worked quickly to extinguish flames at a University City condo complex Wednesday morning. Several people were able to escape unharmed, but their homes were badly damaged.

A resident called 911 around 6:15 a.m. after smelling smoke at the complex on Playmor Terrace near Camino Tranquilo, a few blocks west of Genesee Avenue, said Batt. Chief David Pilkerton with San Diego Fire-Rescue. When crews arrived at the two-story condo complex they saw only “light smoke” outside, Pilkerton said, but when they moved inside the building they “found fire and heat through a wall.”

Flames climbed that wall into the attic, the chief explained, and soon there was “active fire coming through the roof.” Crews called in additional resources, and eventually there were about 60 firefighters on scene to battle the flames. Firefighters cut holes in the roof to get better access to the fire, and they were able to stop the blaze within about 30 minutes, officials said.

Three adults and a dog from two units in the building had to evacuate but were unharmed, according to the chief. No firefighters were injured either.

“Crews couldn’t have worked any better,” Pilkerton said, and the residents were “able to get out quickly and safely.” But due to extensive smoke damage in both units, the residents would not be able to return to their homes right away. The Red Cross was called to help arrange temporary shelter for the group.

The Metro Arson Strike Team was called to investigate the blaze. That unit’s involvement does not necessarily indicate that foul play is suspected in the fire — the investigators are used to determine the cause of many major fires that result in serious damage or injury.