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San Diego Torrey Pines Reserve Fire Nearly Contained, Residents Thankful

San Diego Torrey Pines Reserve Fire Nearly Contained, Residents Thankful

A burned area from the Del Mar fire in a trailhead of the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve North in San Diego on June 26, 2024. (Jane Yang/The Epoch Times)

Jane Yang
Jane Yang

6/27/2024

Updated: 6/27/2024

0

SAN DIEGO—A day after the Del Mar fire, with all evacuation orders and road blocks lifted, the neighborhood around the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve was back to its usual quietness on June 26, aside from several fire engines still on site and a few locals trickling by to check out the aftermath.
According to the San Diego Police Department, the fire began at around 10:45 a.m. on June 25 as a small 1-acre brush fire at the 2000–2300 block of Del Mar Scenic Parkway, the road leading to the north extension of the Torrey Pines Natural Reserve. Officials said the fire burned 23 acres and was 80 percent contained as of late afternoon on June 26.
“Since [I was] a kid, we have walked this trail once or twice a week as a family. I was happy my favorite lookout site was not in the fire’s path,” said Nick Ferreira, a local resident and former firefighter for San Diego East County.
Mr. Ferreira noticed that the fire started at the bottom of a hill and spread up to the trailhead of the Red Ridge Loop Trail.
Describing his experience on the day the fire broke, Mr. Ferreira said, “I was not worried about the fire because it was small and not too close to my house, and I feel like they [the firefighters] had enough resources to contain it. They did a good job protecting the structures.”
Red-brown fire retardant-covered vegetations were seen on June 26, 2024 at an area of the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve North where firefighters contained the Del Mar fire erupted on June 25. (Jane Yang/The Epoch Times)

Red-brown fire retardant-covered vegetations were seen on June 26, 2024 at an area of the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve North where firefighters contained the Del Mar fire erupted on June 25. (Jane Yang/The Epoch Times)

San Diego Fire-Rescue spokeswoman Mónica Muñoz said at a June 25 press conference that once the fire broke, “multiple agencies stepped up and jumped in immediately” to help stop the spread of the fire. However, “those onshore winds, the winds make it challenging, then the terrain, and the really great fuel, which is all that bush ... that’s very, very dense,” Ms. Munoz said. She said the fire had burned 19 acres by the afternoon.
Approximately 2,500 residents received mandatory evacuation orders, and another 1,400 residents received warnings. Both the orders and warnings were lifted around 7 p.m. the same evening of June 25, when the fire was 50 percent contained.
The air was clear of smoke in the cul-de-sac neighborhood streets near the burnt area of the Torrey Pines Reserve in the afternoon of June 26. However, a stretch of the pavement and the roof, yard, and vegetation of the home closest to the burned area were flecked with pink fire retardant.
At the burned area, fire hoses remained on the ground—a typical firefighting strategy so that they’re ready to be picked up and put into use immediately in case the fire restarts, said Mr. Ferreira.
According to a fire captain, there were still five crews remaining on-site on Wednesday “to make sure to get the hotspots out so they don’t flare up later on.”
Pink fire retardant-covered roof and plants were seen on June 26, 2024 at a neighborhood nearby a trailhead of the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve North where firefighters contained the Del Mar fire erupted on June 25. (Jane Yang/The Epoch Times)

Pink fire retardant-covered roof and plants were seen on June 26, 2024 at a neighborhood nearby a trailhead of the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve North where firefighters contained the Del Mar fire erupted on June 25. (Jane Yang/The Epoch Times)

Del Mar residents Peggy Anderson and her husband were among the locals who came out to the trail site on June 26.
Ms. Anderson said they live north of the evacuation area, but it still took her an hour-and-a-half to drive a normally 25-minute route when taking her grandchild home on June 25.
“But I didn’t have to be evacuated and be afraid for my home,” she said. “I was just thankful to the firefighters. What they did is to save these homes and save these people’s lives.”
No injuries or property damages were reported. However, Ms. Munoz said on June 25 two crew members were taken to the hospital due to heat exhaustion. Officials later said both have since been released.
A stretch of pavement covered with pink fire retardant was seen on June 26, 2024 in the neighborhood nearby the area of the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve North where firefighters contained the Del Mar fire erupted on June 25. (Jane Yang/The Epoch Times)

A stretch of pavement covered with pink fire retardant was seen on June 26, 2024 in the neighborhood nearby the area of the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve North where firefighters contained the Del Mar fire erupted on June 25. (Jane Yang/The Epoch Times)

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