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Pala fire in San Diego County 60% contained [Updated]

August 30, 2011 |  8:46 am


The Pala fire in northeast San Diego County is 60% contained after burning more than 300 acres but with no reported damage to homes or other structures, Cal Fire reported Tuesday morning.

The fire broke out after an automobile struck a light pole Monday morning on Pala Temecula Road, sending a shower of sparks into dry grass.

By late afternoon the occupants of three dozen homes along Rancho Heights Road had been ordered by authorities to evacuate. The American Red Cross provided shelter at the gymnasium on nearby Pala Indian Reservation.

The evacuation order was lifted Tuesday.

The blaze has been fought by 605 firefighters along with three helicopters and several air tankers dropping water and fire retardant.

[Update 9:30 am: The fire is not spreading and full containment is expected Tuesday. The cost of fighting the fire is estimated at $404,822, officials said.]


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Southern California brush fires getting under control

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-- Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: An air tanker drops fire retardant on the Pala fire Monday. Credit: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times