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Firefighters take cover when ammunition explodes during blaze at Corona shooting range

Shooting range fire
The Mike Raahauge shooting range in Corona.
(Los Angeles Times)

A chaotic scene erupted at a Corona pistol and rifle range early Monday when a massive blaze caused ammunition to explode and forced firefighters to take cover.

The blaze was reported about 3:50 a.m. at the Mike Raahauge shooting range in the 15000 block of River Road, said Jody Hagemann, a spokeswoman for Cal Fire and the Riverside County Fire Department.

Flames swept through multiple buildings and vehicles and toppled several power lines within the facility.

As firefighters tackled flames, rounds of ammunition began to cook off and fire.

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“That’s one of the scary ones,” Hagemann said of the fire scene.

Fire crews, as well as Riverside County sheriff’s deputies, were forced to back down.

Firefighters eventually extinguished the blaze, but remained at the facility for several hours for cleanup.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. The blaze caused $2.5 million in damage and has forced the facility to close several days.

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In a statement, the shooting range said it will reopen Friday.

“As of right now we have no power, phones or the internet,” the range said. “Please be patient with the entire Raahauge staff as they are working hard to get Raahauge’s back up and running by Friday.”

Tucked among four major highways, the secluded range offers gun rentals and has hunting courses, a sporting clay course and pistol and rifle shooting stations.

veronica.rocha@latimes.com

For breaking news in California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA on Twitter.

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