A brush fire charred about 20 acres in Palm Springs Monday and injured two firefighters before crews were able to stop its spread.
The blaze that started about 11 a.m. some two miles south of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway off Tramway Road was 70% contained as of 5:30 p.m., according to Palm Springs Fire Department Capt. Nathan Gunkel.
“We got lucky on that one,” Gunkel said. “It could have been really bad. Luckily the wind switched directions.”
He said full containment was expected this evening, and that firefighters would remain on scene overnight to watch for flare-ups.
When firefighters arrived, the flames had already devoured 10 acres of vegetation, fueled by heavy winds. About 75 firefighters helped battle the flames, including crews from the Riverside County Fire Department, Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service, along with two air tankers and two helicopters which provided air support.
No evacuations were ordered, although the wind-driven blaze was headed in the direction of Palm Canyon Drive and nearby populated segments of the city before firefighters gained the upper hand.
One firefighter suffered a non-life-threatening injury and another was felled by heat exhaustion, Gunkel said. Both were transported to area hospitals for treatment.
There was no immediate word on what sparked the blaze.
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