By Martin Henderson
An apartment fire that broke out early Saturday injured two firefighters, and left the American Red Cross scrambling to find shelter for about 25 displaced residents.
The three-alarm blaze gutted four units, which were connected to four more units by a breezeway.
Two firefighters were treated for minor burns to their ears and were transported to an area hospital, said Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Steve Concialdi. He said 25 residents were displaced.
Firefighters had been dispatched to the 25000 block of Farthing Street—it's near the corner of Jeronimo and El Toro—at 4:05 a.m., and they had the fire under control by 5:24 a.m., Concialdi said.
Four of the eight units at the large apartment complex were either heavily involved in the fire or sustained smoke damage. Firefighters chopped through the roof of a fifth unit.
"The fire was extremely hot and intense," Concialdi said. "Orange County Sheriff's deputies did an excellent job of evacuating many residents."
The son of a resident who was displaced said the fire started on a ground floor unit.
The Red Cross, meanwhile, was scrambling to find shelter for the two dozen people who lived in the eight residences. It was having trouble because it's a holiday weekend and area hotels were booked.
"It's a busy weekend," said Capt. Thomas Tracey of the Disaster Action Team.
He said Saturday morning that he was unsure whether the Red Cross would need to create a shelter rather than put people up.
"It depends," Tracey said. "At a certain threshold, we may open a shelter. We asses the needs and make a determination."
—City News Service contributed to this report.