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Public Safety

Brush Fire That Scorched 350 Acres In Pala 40% Contained

A row of fire engines at the Mesa Fire in Pala Mesa, June 24, 2021.
Cal Fire/San Diego County Fire
A row of fire engines at the Mesa Fire in Pala Mesa, June 24, 2021.

Fire Information

Status: Active

Location: Pala Mesa

Percentage Contained: 40%

Acres Burned: 350

Evacuations: Evacuation warning lifted

Click here for fire emergency checklist

– 10:20 a.m., June 25, 2021

A wildfire that scorched 350 acres near Pala Casino was 40% contained Friday.

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The blaze erupted for unknown reasons shortly after 2 p.m. Wednesday off state Route 76, about a mile west of Pala Temecula Road in Pala Mesa, according to Cal Fire.

As firefighters worked to corral the blaze, which was moving "with a dangerous rate of spread," authorities shut down the state highway between Horse Ranch Creek Road and the casino about four miles to the east.

No structural damage or injuries were reported, and Cal Fire reported Wednesday evening that the spread of the fire had slowed considerably.

Residents of surrounding areas were advised to prepare to clear out of their homes on short notice should conditions worsen, but those initial evacuation warnings were lifted by Wednesday evening.

Cal Fire also announced Wednesday that state Route 76 was reopened, though drivers traveling through the area were advised to use caution.

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"Firefighters continue to make great progress strengthening containment lines," Cal Fire said in a statement issued Thursday night.

Despite the progress on the blaze, the Air Pollution Control District warned that smoke has settled in some valleys near the burn site, so a smoke advisory was put into effect.

The APCD said air quality may reach unhealthful levels, though with additional progress on the fire, impacts were expected to decrease by Thursday afternoon and evening, and winds were expected to increase blowing toward the east and northeast, and were expected to remain in the same general direction through Friday.

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