SAN DIEGO (AP) — San Diego's fire chief says a "brownout" that sidelines fire engines for budget reasons probably played no role in a recent deadly fire.
Authorities say a faulty space heater probably set the March 19 apartment fire that killed 87-year-old Sam Taylor. A fire engine that normally would have arrived from a station three blocks away was out of service that day and a pumper truck arrived more than three minutes later from another station.
The head of the firefighters' union says having a hose available immediately might have saved Taylor and he wants the brownout to end.
But Fire Chief Javier Mainar says the fire was so hot that Taylor probably could not have been saved.
San Diego has sidelined as many as eight engines daily since February to help close a $179 million deficit.
Information from: The San Diego Union-Tribune, http://www.signonsandiego.com
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