The smoking wreckage of the car in Rancho Bernardo. Courtesy OnScene.TV

A 51-year-old man was killed Thursday when the sports car he was driving veered off a Rancho Bernardo street at high speed, slammed into a tree and burst into flames.

The fatal crash in the 16700 block of West Bernardo Drive took place shortly before noon, according to San Diego Police.

The unidentified motorist was trapped in the burning vehicle and died at the scene, Sgt. Matt Botkin said.

The crash, which also sparked a small brush fire and ruptured a water line, forced a closure of traffic lanes in the area.

Firefighters were able to quickly douse the flames, and city utilities personnel were called in to deactivate the overflowing pipeline, which was soaking a stretch of the street and roadside, according to police.

— City News Service

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