Garden Grove fire displaces at least 12 residents; pack rat conditions reported

GARDEN GROVE, Calif. (KABC) -- A fire in Garden Grove ripped through a total of five buildings, including three homes, and left at least a dozen people homeless Thursday night.

The blaze erupted around 10 p.m. on the 14400 block of Flower Street. At one point, a portion of the roof on one of the homes collapsed.

Crews knocked down the flames around 11:15 p.m. Two homes and two outbuildings were destroyed, and one home was damaged.

A mound of debris, which included tires and a mini refrigerator, was seen in the front yard of one home.

Debris is seen outside a Garden Grove home after firefighters knocked down a blaze on Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015.

Debris is seen outside a Garden Grove home after firefighters knocked down a blaze on Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015.


Fire officials say the biggest challenge of fighting the blaze was the pack rat conditions at the scene.

"If you look behind, you can see that RV garage, it actually had a travel trailer inside of it. (There were) items in there... so it was a very stubborn fire," said Capt. Jim Gabbard with the Garden Grove Fire Department.

Gabbard said crews had to use a backhoe from the city to pull out all the debris.

"If we didn't have that, we would be here for hours," Gabbard said.

One firefighter was injured in the firefight, but he is expected to be OK. The cause of the blaze remains under investigation.

Officials say displaced residents are staying with family members and friends at the moment.

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