At least 30 homes in Southern California destroyed by aggressive wildfire

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At least 30 homes in Southern California destroyed by aggressive wildfire
A Firefighter puts water on a house fence during a wildfire Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. More wildfires broke out Wednesday in San Diego County — threatening homes in Carlsbad and forcing the evacuations of military housing and an elementary school at Camp Pendleton — as Southern California is in the grip of a heat wave. (AP Photo)
A Firefighter puts water on a house fence during a wildfire Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. More wildfires broke out Wednesday in San Diego County — threatening homes in Carlsbad and forcing the evacuations of military housing and an elementary school at Camp Pendleton — as Southern California is in the grip of a heat wave. (AP Photo)
Firefighters knock out a flare up where a brush fire roared through a section of San Diego's north county, Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in San Diego. Weather conditions that at least temporarily calmed allowed firefighters to gain ground early Wednesday on a pair of wildfires that forced thousands of residents to leave their homes. (AP Photo)
A firefighter pours water onto a fully engulfed home Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. A brush fire Wednesday forced evacuation of thousands of people in the city of Carlsbad where at least two homes burned amid a Southern California heat wave that sparked several blazes. (AP Photo)
A fireman carries his shovel up a path as extreme winds bend the shrubbery behind him Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in San Diego. Winds estimated by fire personnel in excess of 50 mph are blowing through the area and causing flare ups from the fire that started yesterday. (AP Photo)
A Carlsbad,Calif. police officer turns traffic away as flames leap behind him Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Weather conditions that at least temporarily calmed allowed firefighters to gain ground early Wednesday on a pair of wildfires that forced thousands of residents to leave their homes. (AP Photo)
A fire truck send a powerful stream of water at a fully engulfed home as smoke rises from behind during a wildfire Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Carlsbad city officials said mandatory evacuations were in progress Wednesday, and more than 11,000 notices were sent to homes and businesses. (AP Photo)
A fireman drags a hose as smoke rises from a nearby wildfire Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Carlsbad city officials said mandatory evacuations were in progress Wednesday, and more than 11,000 notices were sent to homes and businesses. (AP Photo)
A home is fully engulfed in flames as a wildfire burns Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Carlsbad city officials said mandatory evacuations were in progress Wednesday, and more than 11,000 notices were sent to homes and businesses. (AP Photo)
A helicopter drops a fire retardant on a wild fire Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Wind-driven flames are threatening homes in the coastal city of Carlsbad, where officials have sent mandatory evacuation notices to more than 11,000 homes and businesses. (AP Photo)
Powerful streams of water mix with billowing smoke from a home as a wildfire burns Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Carlsbad city officials said mandatory evacuations were in progress Wednesday, and more than 11,000 notices were sent to homes and businesses. (AP Photo)
A wild fire burns toward a Aviara Oaks Middle School Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. Wind-driven flames are threatening homes in the coastal city of Carlsbad, where officials have sent mandatory evacuation notices to more than 11,000 homes and businesses. (AP Photo)
A wildfire climbs a canyon toward homes Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. More wildfires broke out Wednesday in San Diego County — threatening homes in Carlsbad and forcing the evacuations of military housing and an elementary school at Camp Pendleton — as Southern California is in the grip of a heat wave. (AP Photo)
Wildfire climbs a canyon toward homes Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. More wildfires broke out Wednesday in San Diego County, threatening homes in Carlsbad and forcing the evacuations of military housing and an elementary school at Camp Pendleton , as Southern California is in the grip of a heat wave. (AP Photo)
A helicopter attacks a wildfire burning in the north county of San Diego Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
A helicopter flies over burning vegetation as it nears homes Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in Carlsbad, Calif. More wildfires broke out Wednesday in San Diego County — threatening homes in Carlsbad and forcing the evacuations of military housing and an elementary school at Camp Pendleton — as Southern California is in the grip of a heat wave. (AP Photo)
Smoke rises as firefighters work in the brush as two fire fighting helicopters pass each other above one of the colossal homes of Fairbanks Ranch where a wild fire threatened homes Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. (Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California’s drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
Anthony Novom waters down smoldering vegetation surrounding his home in the Rancho Santa Fe neighborhood during a wildfire Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
A helicopter drops water on the grounds surrounding one of the luxury homes of the Fairbanks Ranch area where a wild fire threaten homes Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California’s drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
Jack Elkins gestures as he looks at his backyard fruit trees, ravaged by wildfire Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
Firefighters look on as a helicopter drops water on a wildfire in the Rancho Santa Fe neighborhood Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
A helicopter drops water on a wildfire in the Rancho Santa Fe neighborhood, Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
A helicopter drops water on a wildfire in the Rancho Santa Fe neighborhood Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires pushed by gusty winds chewed through canyons parched by California's drought, prompting evacuation orders for more than 20,000 homes on the outskirts of San Diego and another 1,200 homes and businesses in Santa Barbara County 250 miles to the north. (AP Photo)
Billowing smoke rises from flames as firefighters begin the trek up the hills to battle a wild fire, Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Billowing smoke rises from flames as firefighters begin the trek up the hills to battle a wild fire, Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Smoke rises from a canyon where a wild fire is burning Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
A lone tree stands in the path of approaching flames as wild fire burns through a canyon Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Firefighters face a huge smoke cloud as they plan their attack on a wild fire Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
A helicopter attacks a wild fire burning Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
California firefighters arrive to assist local fire personnel in a battle against a wild fire Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Firefighters battle a wild fire in the Santa Luz area of San Diego Tuesday, May 13, 2014. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Flames grow as a wild fire burns out-of-control in the north county area of San Diego Tuesday, May 13, 2014, in San Diego. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
Firefighters battle a wild fire in the Santa Luz area of San Diego Tuesday, May 13, 2014. Wildfires destroyed a home and forced the evacuation of several others Tuesday in California as a high-pressure system brought unseasonable heat and gusty winds to a parched state that should be in the middle of its rainy season. (AP Photo)
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SAN DIEGO (AP) -- A fast-moving wildfire ignited hillsides and destroyed more than two dozen homes Wednesday in the coastal city of Carlsbad as weary firefighters scrambled to control multiple blazes in Southern California on the second day of a sweltering heat wave.

Flames were shooting up along canyon ridges as thick black smoke darkened blue skies over the small city, about 30 miles north of San Diego, known for its Legoland California amusement park that was closed Wednesday because of a power outage.

Mandatory evacuations were in progress, and more than 11,000 notices were sent to homes and businesses. Local TV broadcasts showed the blaze engulfing suburban-style homes with manicured lawns.

No injuries were reported.

State fire Capt. Mike Moehler told KCAL-TV that all of the homes were in the same neighborhood and engines were being called in from across the region to help.

The blaze was one of several wildfires that firefighters in San Diego County were battling amid hot, dry and windy conditions.

Offshore wind means some coastal communities have higher temperatures than inland and coupled with low humidities, "it's just, unfortunately, a recipe for a large fire and that's what we're seeing right now," Moehler said.

Another wildfire further north, forced the evacuation of residents in military housing at Camp Pendleton, and the closure of an elementary school on the Marine Corps base. A third fire spread from a burning vehicle on coastal Interstate 5 to roadside brush near the northwest corner of the Marine base.

Earlier, authorities reported 25 percent containment of a 2.42-square-mile fire that broke out Tuesday and forced thousands of people to flee the Rancho Bernardo area of San Diego. In Santa Barbara County, a 600-acre blaze near the city of Lompoc was 50 percent contained.

State fire officials say triple digit temperatures and the drought were setting conditions for an unusually busy firefighting season.

Marine Corps officials said military fire crews on Wednesday were fighting a blaze that started at about 9:45 a.m. at the Naval Weapons Station in Fallbrook, north of San Diego, and had spread to more than 100 acres. Residents in military housing have been ordered to evacuate. Students at Mary Fay Pendleton Elementary School, located on base, were also ordered to go home.

Flames from a burning big rig on Interstate 5 on the northern Camp Pendleton coast have spread to about 3 acres of brush. The California Highway Patrol says at least one lane in each direction remains open, but traffic is backing up. It's unclear why the truck caught fire.

Further south, blazes threatened homes in Carlsbad, and prompted the evacuation of Carrillo Elementary School in the neighboring community of San Marcos.

Evacuation orders were lifted for all of the more than 20,000 residents in and around San Diego on Tuesday night just a few hours after they were called, and all but a handful of those in 1,200 homes and businesses told to evacuate in Santa Barbara County had been allowed to return.

The 2.47-square mile blaze was 25 percent contained. It was hoped that number would increase to 50 percent by day's end, San Diego Fire-Rescue spokesman Lee Swanson said.

The Santa Barbara County blaze, 250 miles to the northwest, was 50 percent contained Wednesday morning. Firefighters also adjusted its size downward to 600 acres.

Two firefighters suffered minor injuries - one heat-related and one from smoke inhalation, state fire battalion chief Ray Cheney said. Neither blaze caused any home damage, but another hot, dry and gusty day was expected as California baked in a spring heat wave as high pressure sat over the West.

In the mountains of southwestern New Mexico, crews battling a 9-square mile wildfire are preparing for high winds this week. And in the Texas Panhandle, about 2,100 residents have started returning to their homes after wildfire burned at least 156 structures. The fire in the Fritch area was 85 percent contained Wednesday.

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