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Brush fire partially contained in hills west of Temecula

Smoke rising from the Sandia Fire in Temecula in southwestern Riverside County, July 5, 2023.
Smoke rising from the Sandia Fire in Temecula in southwestern Riverside County, July 5, 2023.
Updated: July 5, 2023 at 4:49 PM PDT
Update: Evacuation orders were lifted early Wednesday evening as the fire remained at 7.6 acres and was 95% contained, Cal Fire tweeted.

Editor's note: This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available. Click here for the latest update from Cal Fire.

A brush fire erupted Wednesday in the hills west of Temecula scorched nearly seven acres and threatened homes, prompting evacuations before it was stopped.

The non-injury blaze was reported at 11:40 a.m. in the area of Sandia Creek Drive and El Prado Road, in the unincorporated community of De Luz, according to the Riverside County Fire Department.

The agency said multiple engine and hand crews from the county, as well as personnel from surrounding agencies, were sent to the location and encountered flames moving at a moderate rate through heavy vegetation.


Two Cal Fire air tankers and two water-dropping helicopters made a series of runs on the brusher and aided crews in establishing protective perimeters around several residences.

A mandatory evacuation was implemented in the lightly populated area, resulting in 15 homes being evacuated in the vicinity of Sandia Creek and El Prado, according to officials at the scene.

No properties were damaged.

The fire's forward rate of spread was stopped at 2:33 p.m., and the blaze was partially contained.

Sheriff's deputies and California Highway Patrol officers shut down Sandia Creek between El Prado to the north and De Anza Road to the south for public safety.


Crews were expected to be on the fire lines until late Wednesday evening, mopping up.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

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