San Diego County brush fire destroys 20 structures

Smoke from Mexican fire

Smoke from the fire in Mexico near Otay Mountain. Courtesy

It remained the extent of the injuries resulting from the Lilac Fire.

In a text message, Scolamieri said that the barns on the lower side of the property "appear to be gone".

A brush fire sparked Thursday near San Diego has spread to the San Louis Rey Downs training center that houses hundreds of racehorses, including those trained by Peter Miller, who won two races at this year's Breeders' Cup. There have been massive fires in Los Angeles and Ventura counties in the last 48 hours that have burned more than 120,000 acres and are not under control. Two firefighters battling the blaze have been hospitalized and were expected to recover. At least one fire truck was on site with helicopters hovering above.

Old Highway 395 was closed between West Lilac Road and Highway 76, Cal Fire said.

The Skirball Fire burned through 475 acres and was 20 percent contained as of 3:20 p.m., leading to a brief shutdown of the 405 Freeway.

A mobile home park, a country club and two schools have been evacuated.

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Mandatory evacuations were ordered in the area of West Lilac Road and Sullivan Middle School.

Authorities set up evacuation centers for the displaced at East Valley Community Center in Escondido, Fallbrook High School, Pala Casino and Pechanga Casino.

The Del Mar Fairgrounds was opened as an evacuation center for livestock, and 130 animals had been brought to the facility as of around 5 p.m. County officials urged livestock owners to evacuate their animals well ahead of time.

The cause of the blaze - which broke out amid a National Weather Service "red flag" wildfire warning slated to expire Sunday night - was not immediately clear.

"So now, you combine that with the high wind that we're expecting, and all the dry brush, really that is a risky situation for everybody here in San Diego", said Heggie.

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