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Lilac Fire: Wildfire Breaks Out In Fallbrook, San Diego

The Lilac Fire broke out in the early afternoon in Fallbrook, San Diego.
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UPDATE: Dec. 8, 2017, 9:55 a.m. EST – The Lilac Fire in San Diego County grew to 4,100 acres by early Friday morning, Cal Fire said. Five structures were destroyed while thousands more were threatened by the flames. An unknown amount of homes and structures were also damaged in the fire.

The fire continued to move at a “dangerous rate of spread,” officials said. Mandatory evacuations were in place for surrounding areas, while evacuation shelters were set up at Fallbrook High School, Pala Casino and East Valley Community Center.

UPDATE: 7:39 p.m. EST — The Lilac Fire grew to 2,500 acres and was zero percent contained late Thursday afternoon, Cal Fire San Diego said. Twenty structures were destroyed while another 1,000 were threatened.

At least two people were burned and sent for treatment, according to Cal Fire.

Original story:

A fire broke out in San Diego County Thursday along Interstate 15 and State Route 76. The Lilac Fire, which started in the early afternoon in Fallbrook, was estimated to be about 175 acres, according to Cal Fire San Diego.

The Lilac Fire was zero percent contained as of Thursday afternoon. Two structures were destroyed while another 12 were damaged, Cal Fire said.

Air and ground resources were sent to the scene to fight the flames. Crews from nearby Camp Pendelton joined local firefighters in an effort to contain the blaze. Winds in the area were up to 50 mph, according to KGTV. Certain schools in the region, including Sullivan Middle School, as well as a mobile home park near the fire were evacuated, NBC News reported. Mandatory evacuations were also in place for some nearby residences, including all structures between Sullivan Middle School and Old Highway 395.

Photos posted on social media showed smoke from the fire that could be seen for miles surrounding the flames.  Black clouds could be seen above Bonsall High School, which was also evacuated, KPBS News reported. Amtrak suspended service between Los Angeles and San Luis Obispo due to widespread fires, the company announced. In addition to the Lilac Fire, another fire broke out nearby at the San Luis Rey Training Center, south of West Lilac Road. That fire had consumed about three acres, the San Diego Union Tribune reported.

Strong Santa Ana winds fueled wildfires across the Southern portion of California this week. Resources were stretched thin as firefighters worked to combat a multitude of blazes, including the Thomas Fire in Ventura County, which was spread over more than 100,000 acres as of Thursday morning. Near Sylmar, the Creek Fire had already destroyed more than 12,000 acres. Hundreds of thousands of residents were evacuated throughout the state.

The Creek Fire and the Thomas Fire began Monday,  but Thursday brought yet another wildfire in Huntington Beach as well. Crews were dispatched around 10 a.m. local time when the flames began near Beach Boulevard and Adams Avenue.

Containment of the fires throughout Southern California was made difficult thanks to extremely high winds combined with low humidity and dry landscapes. Authorities said the wind could pick up in the coming hours, making the situation even more difficult for fire personnel.

"I've got to be honest," said assistant Los Angeles Fire Chief Armando Hogan, according to the New York Times. "We're concerned about everything."

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