Motorized equipment used to clear brush sparked a fire Wednesday in a rural area just west of Murrieta, according to CAL FIRE. Firefighters held the blaze to 400 acres.
Three firefighters suffered minor injuries, and one home burned.
The blaze was reported around 11:30 a.m. at Tenaja and Via Volcano roads in the unincorporated Riverside County community of Deluz.
Voluntary, or “soft,” evacuations were in place for residents who did not feel safe, but no mandatory evacuations were ordered.
Broadcast images showed a home burning, though it wasn’t immediately clear whether the two-story structure was occupied. An emergency staging area was set up at Avenida La Cresta and Valle Vista, from which personnel from multiple agencies, including the Riverside County, Murrieta and Los Angeles County fire departments and the Pechanga tribal fire unit were deploying.
Thirty-five engine crews, six water tender companies and six hand crews, numbering around 230 personnel, were battling the flames, which had the potential to spread to 1,500 acres, according to reports from the scene.
Most of the side roads in the area are dirt, with homes built along hillsides. A half-dozen water-dropping helicopters and a like number of air tankers were called into action to help contain the blaze, which was 20 percent contained by 3:30 p.m., according to the fire department. The fire was 50 percent contained as of 5:45 p.m.