North County Brush Fire
Crews battle the Wala Fire in Oceanside Sunday. Photo credit: Screen shot, @10News, via Twitter

Crews gained control over a 75-acre Oceanside brush fire by late Sunday afternoon though it initially threatened homes, according to city officials.

The forward spread was stopped at about 4 p.m., the city reported on Twitter. No structures were lost, though some fencing burned, the city said, and mop up will continue into the evening.

The fire, with a moderate rate of speed, threatened structures in Oceanside and forced residents in surrounding neighborhoods to evacuate.

The evacuation order was lifted at 5:24 p.m., but non-residents were asked to avoid the area for the next several hours while first responders remained on the scene.

Residents in the 300 block of Rimhurst Court, the 300 block of Shadowtree and all of Wala Drive had been asked to evacuate out of an abundance of caution, according to the Oceanside Fire Department.

As firefighters battled the blaze, dubbed the Wala Fire, in the 800 block of West Airport Road, officers with the Oceanside Police Department went door-to-door notifying residents on Spring Brook Court and Silver Ridge Court to evacuate.

Officials set up an evacuation center, where Red Cross volunteers assisted the displaced, at El Camino High School, 400 Rancho Del Oro Road.

Cal Fire San Diego, the North County Fire Protection District, Vista, Encinitas and Carlsbad joined in responding to the fire, first reported at 12:21 p.m.

Two air tankers spread retardant over the fire at 1:45 p.m., but all air resources were released at 4:18 p.m. A plume of black smoke had blanketed the area and could be seen for miles.

In addition, Oceanside police tweeted that media and the public should “keep all drones away from the area of the fire.”

Authorities warned at 3 p..m. that smoke from the Oceanside fire was drifting into southwest Riverside County. Murrieta officials took to Twitter to assure residents that there were no active fires in the community.

The blaze started as forecasters warned of “critical fire weather conditions” in parts of San Diego County through Monday.

– City News Service and staff reports

Update 4:20 and 6 p.m. June 12, 2022





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Ellen Bullock