Aguanga Buck Fire near Temecula forces evacuations


Mandatory evacuations were ordered for residents north of Sage Road, south of Stanley Road, east of Benton Road and west of Reed Valley Road. (See information for evacuation centers below.)

The brush fire, dubbed the "Buck Fire," had burned about 3,000 acres by 11 p.m., with 5-percent containment. Four structures were damaged and 32 of 47 homes in the area were evacuated. One house was a total loss.

The flames began in the area of Sage Road between Lewis Valley and Buck roads. The fire was reported about 1 p.m.

Six air-tankers and six water-dropping helicopters were assisting Cal-Fire ground crews battling the blaze. Four bulldozers were also on scene. About 210 firefighting personnel were part of the effort. Orange County Fire Authority and Riverside County Fire Department firefighters were assisting.

Officials said two firefighters were taken to the hospital with minor injuries. One civilian was airlifted to the hospital for treatment of burns.

Aguanga is a community located about 18 miles east of Temecula, 25 miles southeast of Murrieta and about 30 miles northeast of Fallbrook.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

Power company Anza Electric Cooperative Inc. said power was restored to the Red Mountain, Benton and Stanley road areas. A power outage was remained in the Thomas Road and Lewis Valley areas until further notice due to the vegetation fire.

Evacuation information for residents:

- American Red Cross evacuation center at the Community Recreation Center, located at 30875 Rancho Vista Road in Temecula

- Riverside Emergency Animal Rescue System (R.E.A.R.S.) is helping to evacuate large and small animals at 581 South Grand Avenue in San Jacinto

- Primary small animal evacuation center is at Ramona Animal Shelter, located at 690 Humane Way in San Jacinto, (951) 654-8002

- Horse shelter is at Helton Hay & Feed, located at 26852 Bradley Road in Menifee, (951) 775-2226

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