Firefighters Prepared For Long Hot Summer - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Firefighters Prepared For Long Hot Summer

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Fire season came in with a fury last summer, and this year could be worse.

Captain Nick Schuler says in the next week or so Cal Fire will be ramping up crews, jumping from 18 staffed engines to 26. They're doing their part, and now they're asking you to do yours.

"The defensible space is really 100 feet around their home," Capt. Schuler said.

Captain Schuler says this holiday weekend while everyone's home is a great time to review your fire readiness.

"We want them to look around to see if they have that defensible space. Do they have an evacuation plan for them and their family, and when they're out barbecuing and enjoying their time, be fire safe," he said.

Diligence by homeowners really helped crews battling the Pala fire Sunday. It burned 122 acres and damaged three homes, but is now 100 percent contained. Large power lines in the area created some challenges for crews fighting the flames from above.

"Pilots are faced with smoky conditions - steep, difficult terrain and flying at low altitudes, so when you have these combinations and throw in large transmission lines it poses other hazards," Capt. Schuler said.

This was actually just one of three fires Sunday. Another burned in the San Diego County Estates area, and there was a small grass fire in Tierrasanta that burned next to an apartment complex.

"It kind of makes you think anything can happen anywhere. You never know what to expect," witness Josh Keele said.

Today's fire in Escondido was contained to just one acre There were no structures damaged and no injuries reported.

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