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Firefighters respond to multiple fires in SLO County

Posted at 10:32 PM, Jun 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-10 03:07:46-04

On Tuesday, several vegetation fires started within minutes of each other in Atascadero, Paso Robles, and Morro Bay.

The Atascadero Fire Department said a car lost control, got stuck on some rocks and caught on fire just after 4 p.m. Tuesday afternoon.

While firefighters were able to save several homes, one out-building was destroyed along with a van.

"I just came out of the house and happened to see the car already in the ditch," said Eric Goetsch. "Six people had gotten out. Made sure they're all okay."

Goetsch lives just across the street from where flames scorched the hillside on Casanova Road in Atascadero.

"All of a sudden -- saw a little bit of smoke, and within a couple minutes up it went and it just took off from there," he said.

"This was one of our first priorities -- getting a hose at this house," said Chief Casey Bryson of Atascadero Fire. "It took a little bit of heat damage but it's still standing. We saved this one."

It burned right up next to a handful of homes damaging a couple of them.

Resident, Scott Schweitzer said the flames were 10-feet tall in some spots but he was prepared.

"I had just finished trimming all of the trees on the property eight-feet off the ground for this sort of thing," Schweitzer said.

A total of 10 acres was burned.

Meantime, firefighters from all over the county attacked the fire from the ground and the air with water drops and phos-chek ,but resources had to be divided between a couple other fires.

Firefighters also responded to a brush fire near the Morro Bay dog beach. It charred about 2 acres.

In Paso Robles, a small fire was stopped at a quarter-acre on Peachy Canyon Road and Narnia Way.

The fires serve as an important reminder to have defensible space surrounding your properties as we enter the peak of fire season.

"If people prepare their property for this sort of thing, you can actually defend it; and this is a good case of that," Schweitzer said.

Highway 41 was temporarily closed in Atascadero on Tuesday due to the fire.