SAN DIEGO (CNS/CBS 8) - A dozen people were displaced when discarded smoking material sparked a fire at a former fraternity house near San Diego State University early Wednesday, causing $250,000 in damage, authorities said.
The fire at 5071 College Avenue was reported at 5:12 a.m. and knocked down about 25 minutes later, according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department. No injuries were reported.
The fire was started by smoldering smoking material in a trash can in a back patio area. Damage was estimated at $150,000 to the structure, $50,000 to its contents and $50,000 to exterior things, including two cars, SDFRD said. Investigators believe the fire was possibly caused by lit cigarettes.
The house was formerly used by the fraternity Zeta Beta Tau, but is now a privately owned rental property. The displaced students are being housed in university dorms.
"The students will be helped out by the Red Cross," Captain Juan Flores with San Diego Fire-Rescue said.