The brush fire in Sorrento Valley. Courtesy San Diego Fire-Rescue
The brush fire in Sorrento Valley. Courtesy San Diego Fire-Rescue

Updated at 9:30 a.m. June 9, 2015

A brush fire sparked by a hawk hitting a high voltage power line in Sorrento Valley blackened about four acres and caused an electrical outage to area businesses and other structures.

A hawk clutching a snake in its talons flew into the utility line in the vicinity of Dunhill and Flintkote streets around 5:45 a.m., Tuesday, caught fire and fell to the ground, according to San Diego Fire-Rescue Department spokesman Lee Swanson. While the cause of the fire was not unusual, dry conditions in the area in spite of a forecast for showers allowed it to spread quickly, he said.

The blaze started in light grass on a hillside behind General Atomics then spread to heavier brush, Swanson said

About 80 firefighters, some in helicopters, had the fire under control in about an hour, according to the spokesman. It was contained before it could become a threat to nearby structures.

No one was injured, but the blaze caused about $10,000 in damage to San Diego Gas & Electric equipment. It also initially knocked out electricity to 413 utility customers in the Torrey Pines, Sorrento Valley and University City neighborhoods, but service was later restored.

— City News Service

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.