Firefighters Fighting ‘Stubborn' Brush Fire in Santee North of SR-52

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Several fire departments will continue to fight a "stubborn" brush fire through the night in a riverbed that is burning close to homes near State Route 52 in Santee.

The fire ignited in a brush along Forester Creek, just north of State Route 52 near the junction with SR-125 and east of the Carlton Oaks Country Club at around noon.

The brush fire was reported to be around four to six acres at around 2 p.m., Santee Fire Department Chief John Garlow told NBC 7.

Garlow said the fire was "stubborn" as palm trees in the riverbed kept igniting.

San Diego County Sheriff's closed Carlton Hills Boulevard between Mission Gorge Road and Carlton Oaks Drive as fire crews get a handle on the fire.

NBC 7's Artie Ojeda is in Santee with the latest update on the stubborn fire.

No structures are currently threatened but several homes on Willowgrove Avenue were evacuated as a precaution, Garlow said.

At noon, SkyRanger 7 was above the scene as a water-dropping helicopter could be seen grabbing water near a small lake nearby as smoke billowed to the west, rising over homes.

Several palm trees were seen scorched by flames.

Firefighters formed a line between several homes and the fire, dousing the lush vegetation with water to prevent its spread to property.

Some residents could be seen standing on their roofs using hoses to spray water as a last-ditch effort to protect their homes.

"I'm just hoping they (fire crews) can get it under control before it gets out of hand," said Tonya Vincent, a resident of Santee. "I just saw a lot of smoke and ashes and its just overwhelmingly sad."

San Diego County Sheriff's Deputies could be seen walking through the neighborhood to alert residents of the nearby fire.

Two helicopters were at the scene continuing the get water from the nearby lake to help put out the fire.

Santee Fire, Heartland, La Mesa, Lakeside fire departments are assisting in the firefight.

Santee Fire said that fire operations would continue to impact the Mast Park Area.

No other information was available.

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