At least two people were injured and one home was burned in an 8-acre vegetation fire that burned in Jurupa Valley Thursday, threatening several homes in the area.
Over 75 firefighters battled the blaze that was reported at 11:45 a.m. near Van Buren Boulevard and 60th Street.
The fire appeared to start in a field behind a block of several homes and spread quickly.
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Residents said flames and smoke were overwhelming as they fled the area. Areli Hernandez's home was badly burned in the 8000 block of 60th Street. She said she had seconds to flee the wind-driven flames.
"I don't know, the fire started over here in the bush and I was trying to get the hose. I just heard one of the firemen tell me get out." she said. "As soon as he did, the air brought the whole thing to the back of our house. Look it's gone."
Hernandez managed to escape with her young son. The family's dog did not make it out with them.
Through tears she said, "Oso's part of our family, he ran back in. I don't know why he ran back."
Fortunately, officers from The Department of Animal Services were able to find Oso and reunite the dog with Hernandez and her family.
A red flag warning went into effect in Southern California at 5 a.m. on Wednesday. It was still active when the blaze erupted in the desert area.
Evacuations were in place for residents of about 25 homes on Hudson Street between Main Street and Limonite Avenue, officials said.
A firefighter and resident, who both suffered minor injuries, were being treated for their injuries, officials from the Riverside County Fire Department said.
The fire also affected powerlines that were down in the area.
Aerial footage showed plumes of white smoke shooting into the sky from the burn area.
Road closures on several streets were prompted by the blaze:
- 58th Street between Felspar and Hudson streets
- Felspar Street between 58th Street and Limonite Avenue
- Van Buren Boulevard between 56th Street and Limonite Avenue
The fire was 50 percent contained shortly after 2 p.m. Officials from The Department of Animal Services worked with firefighters to reunite several pets with their owners.
It was not clear how the fire started.