365-Acre San Pasqual Fire Now 80% Contained

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A jet taker drops retardant on the San Pasqual fire. Courtesy Cal Fire

Updated July 29, 2018 at 8:06 p.m.

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A wildfire that erupted Friday near the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, scorching 365 acres, was 80 percent contained as of 6 p.m., fire officials said Sunday.

Crews will remain in the area through the weekend, setting lines of containment around all the charred terrain and making sure all hot spots are snuffed out, according to CalFire Capt. Issac Sanchez.

As of 5:53 p.m. Saturday, all evacuation orders were lifted.

The blaze started for unknown reasons shortly before 1:30 p.m. Friday, off the 17000 block of state Route 78 in the San Pasqual Valley, according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.

Within 90 minutes, the blaze had burned across more than 200 acres, forcing residential evacuations and the shutdown of part a rural highway, as ground and airborne crews scramble to corral the fast-moving flames.

By 7:30 p.m. Friday, the fire’s progress was halted and most of the active flames were doused, CalFire said.

As the flames spread rapidly to the southeast, authorities shut down state Route 78 between Bandy Canyon and Ramona Highlands roads as a safety precaution and to expedite the firefighting operations in the rural area, according to Cal Fire and state transportation officials.

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As of 6 p.m. Sunday all road closures along Highway 78 in the area of the fire have been lifted, CalFire San Diego said.

Sheriff’s deputies cleared people out of homes potentially in the path of the fire. Vacated areas include neighborhoods along Via Cuesta; Via Vista Grande; Prestige Street; Day Star Way; Oak Grove, Rancho Villa, Rangeland, Rustic Villa and Weekend Villa roads; and Cinque Terre, Corniglia, Highland Hills, Horizon View and Rio Maggiore drives.

So far, the blaze has not caused any structural damage or injuries.

The cause of the fire remained under investigation.

–City News Service

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