Camp Pendleton Fire Still Raging as Firefighters Work to Contain Blaze

Thursday, 15 May 2014 09:44 AM

By Michael Mullins

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A Camp Pendleton fire has spread to more than 100 acres and forced the evacuation of residents in military housing on the U.S. Marine base outside San Diego, California.

The evacuation follows California Gov. Jerry Brown's declaration of a state of emergency in San Diego Wednesday night due to the still-burning blaze that has consumed 2,000 acres, destroying homes and power lines in its path, The Washington Post reported.

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According to Marine Corps officials, the fire began Tuesday at about 9:45 a.m. at the Naval Weapons Station in Fallbrook, just north of San Diego.

As of early Thursday, local officials claimed the fire was 50 percent contained, UT San Diego reported.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

In San Diego County, record-high temperatures were forecast as were winds of 25 mph with gusts of up to 50 mph, which could complicate efforts, according to The Associated Press.

"It's starting to pick up already," San Diego Fire-Rescue spokesman Lee Swanson told the AP, referring to the wind. "But our objective is to get to 50 percent containment or more by this evening."

In addition to the Marine base evacuation, the city of San Diego also issued between 16,000 and 17,000 evacuation orders shortly after the blaze began, San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore told the AP. The evacuation orders have since been rescinded.

As of Thursday morning, approximately 690 firefighters were reportedly still battling the blaze across San Diego County.

"There's a lot of work to be done today still," Rancho Santa Fe Fire Chief Tony Michel told reporters Wednesday. "There are a lot of hotspots throughout the whole area of the fire. Crews will be working diligently to put those fires out. The winds are going to be a problem."

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