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Stolen car chase sparks fire; homes, cars burned

August 16, 2019

MORENO VALLEY, Calif. (AP) — Authorities say a brushfire that erupted after a stolen car chase has burned two homes and prompted the evacuation of dozens more east of Los Angeles.

Authorities say Riverside County sheriff’s deputies were chasing the car Thursday afternoon when it crashed in a brushy field near some homes. Two people were taken into custody but a fire erupted and quickly spread to five acres.

Fire officials say two homes were severely damaged and 71 were ordered evacuated.

The stolen car and two sheriff’s SUV patrol vehicles were gutted. They were among nine vehicles damaged or destroyed along with three outbuildings.

Firefighters say they saved 80 homes from flames.

The fire was later doused and some evacuation orders were lifted but authorities say others will remain in place until Friday morning.

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