North County home catches fire twice in one day


ESCONDIDO, Calif. – Firefighters battled flames at a rural North County home Friday night for the second time in the past 24 hours.

The fire reignited just after 5:30 p.m. in the 800 block of Via Rancho Parkway in Escondido. Heavy smoke and flames were visible in the immediate area surrounding the property, which already had been ravaged earlier in the day when another fire broke out there at about 2:30 a.m.

Four residents escaped the house unharmed, but one of the family’s cats died in the morning fire, Escondido Fire Dept. spokesman Jeff Murdock said.

“Sometimes even though we put a lot of water on it, it may soak up the water, but when the heat comes up, it dries out,” Murdock said. “The wind may pick it up and rekindle it.”

Investigators believe the early morning fire sparked in the home’s garage, then spread throughout the attic, EFD spokesman Jeff Murdock said.

Crews approached the evening’s blaze delicately due to fears of flooding livestock which live downhill from the home. Waiting for the roof to expose the flames, firefighters were patient before dousing the charred skeletal frame of the tile-roofed family home.

As of 10 p.m., firefighters remained on the property to finish extinguishing the fire. Murdock said gas and electric service have been shut off at the home, which he called “unlivable.”

“With the new fire — it was already destroyed — but now it’s definitely even worse,” he said.

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