Fire officials continue to search for the cause of last week’s
dangerous brush fire that charred 27 acres and threatened
Fire officials continue to search for the cause of last week’s dangerous brush fire that charred 27 acres and threatened homes.
It took nearly three hours and more than 150 firefighters to contain the blaze, according to authorities, but not before injuring one firefighter.
The fire broke out at the base of a grassy hill near Main Avenue and Liberata Drive in northeast Morgan Hill about 4:30 p.m. Thursday. The thick smoke could be seen from the valley floor as firefighters from Calfire, Santa Clara County Fire, Gilroy Fire and San Jose Fire battled the blaze that briefly threatened structures, but because of a “good containment line around the structures” the properties survived intact, said Capt. Mary Gutierrez, spokeswoman for San Jose Fire Department. It did damage one storage trailer and was contained at 7:17 p.m. when the majority of crews were released. One crew remained over night to ensure there were no flareups and a team chopped down burned trees to douse embers Friday.
The injured firefighters was brought off the fire suffering from extreme heat exhaustion. He was taken to a local hospital, treated and released and was back at work Friday, Gutierrez said.
There were no evacuations, but officials ordered a “shelter-in-place” to threatened residents. The number of residents was not immediately known.
Investigators are working to determine the cause, but as of Monday had no definitive determination, Gutierrez added.
The quick reaction by multiple callers to 911 allowed firefighters to gather resources to fight the blaze.
“Getting air support in quickly and dropping retardant helped save homes,” Gutierrez said.
Dan Legan, who with her husband are building a home at the end of Liberata Drive, called 911 shortly after the fire broke out just east of their home.
“I never thought it could spread that fast,” she said of the blaze that burned up a hill toward several other homes northeast of their home.