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Wildfire destroys home, burns woman

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POSTED May 13, 2013 12:01 a.m.

EL CAJON  (AP) — A small wildfire in San Diego County destroyed one mobile home, burned several others and several vehicles and left a woman badly burned Sunday before it was put out about 90 minutes later.

The fire broke out in dry creek bed at about noon and burned about 1½ acres before most of the flames were quickly doused by about 100 firefighters with water drops from two planes and two helicopters, Lakeside Fire Protection District Chief Andy Parr told U-T San Diego.

Firefighters arrived at the blaze and found the woman with severe burns along the road near flaming brush. She was taken to the University of California, San Diego burn unit in critical condition. It was not immediately clear whether the unidentified woman lived in a nearby mobile home park or a homeless encampment along the creek, Parr said.

Tall cane plants fueled the blaze and sent embers flying as far as 100 feet away, spreading the fire into a mobile home park where several trailers were burned and a neighboring roofing business where an office and several company vehicles were damaged, Parr said.

Jesus Bernal told U-T San Diego that the mobile home where he lives with his wife and four children and all of their belongings were destroyed.

“We’ll have to find somewhere to live,” Bernal said.

There was no immediate word on the cause.

Substantial firefighting resources were available to contain the fire quickly because no other major blazes were burning in the area, Parr said.

But he said the ferocity of even the small fire didn’t bode well for the coming season.

“The fires are bigger and moving more quickly than usual for early May,” Parr said.


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