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At least one home destroyed in Riverside County brush fire

Weary firefighter

A fast-moving brush fire has burned at least one home in the La Cresta area near Murrieta, Riverside County fire officials said Wednesday.

By 3:30 p.m., the fire had spread to about 400 acres and was only 20% contained.

Footage from news helicopters showed flames engulfing a single-family home. Neighbors told KCAL News that the owners were not home.

There are no mandatory evacuations in effect.

PHOTOS: Riverside County brush fire

“We have instructed residents that if they feel unsafe, they should leave,” said Melody Hendrickson, a spokeswoman for the Riverside County Fire Department.

At least 236 firefighters are battling the fire with 35 engines, six air tankers, four helicopters and three bulldozers.

The blaze is near Via Volcano and Tenaja Road near Murrieta. There was no immediate word on the cause.

Battalion Chief Phil Rawlings told KCAL News that the wind was not a significant factor but added that there was a lot of dry brush in the hills.


PHOTOS: Riverside County brush fire

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-- Alexandra Zavis

Photo:  A Riverside County firefighter rests his head in the extreme heat while fighting to save a house fully engulfed in flames. Credit: Gina Ferazzi/Los Angeles Times


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