A brush fire possibly sparked by a trash truck near Interstate 10 in Calimesa has destroyed 74 mobile homes, damaged 16 others, injured an unknown number of people, scorched 823 acres and was 10% contained this morning.
At 11 a.m., officials will be holding a news conference providing an update on the Sandalwood Fire.
The blaze was reported at 1:58 p.m. Thursday at Sandalwood Drive and Seventh Street, near the Interstate 10 exit ramp, according to the Riverside County Fire Department.
A fire department captain said the fire originated in a trash truck, and when the driver pulled over and dumped the burning load, flames ignited dry grass and spread into the Villa Calimesa Mobile Home Park. At least five residences were initially destroyed, but within hours, dozens of mobile homes had been consumed by the blaze.
Video from a resident’s home camera shows plumes of smoke emanating from the back of the trash truck as it drives by.