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Costa Mesa fire crews rescue 3 trapped in apartment fire, battle Talbert Park brush fire

Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue on the 500 block of Joann Street.
Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue crews rescued two adults and one child from an apartment fire Saturday morning on the 500 block of Joann Street.
(Courtesy of Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue)

Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue crews saved three Costa Mesa residents trapped in an early Saturday morning apartment fire before later responding to a small brush-fueled fire in the city’s Talbert Park.

Two adults and one child were rescued from a first-floor apartment on the 500 block of Joann Street shortly after 2:30 a.m. Saturday, after a fire broke out in the living room and created so much smoke they could not find an exit, fire officials said Monday.

Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue Department spokesman Capt. Joe Noceti said the tenants called in the fire and remained on the phone with a dispatcher while a crew made its way to the apartment complex.

“They actually gave the dispatcher play-by-play information and were able to relay their location,” said Noceti, who was at the scene of the fire. “There was a functioning smoke alarm going off the whole time.”

Fire crews rescued an adult male and female and one female child while they battled the blaze, preventing its spread to nearby units. Firefighters remained on scene until 6:30 a.m.

“It took about four hours to button everything up,” Noceti said. “The occupants were assessed by paramedics but didn’t have to be hospitalized.”

Play spaces and restrooms at Lions Park, which has undergone several recent renovations, could be done by spring, while a new east side pocket park will honor Rachel Perez Hamilton.

Residents were periodically evacuated from their apartments but were allowed to return when it was determined no other units had been damaged. Preliminary estimates indicate the incident may have caused about $40,000 in property damage and $10,000 in content loss.

Noceti said the cause of the fire was still under investigation, adding that the landlord of the unit was cooperating with investigators. Two pet rabbits, which had gotten loose during the fire, were located and returned to the victims, he added.

A small brush fire in Costa Mesa's Talbert Park
A small brush fire that broke out in Costa Mesa’s Talbert Park Saturday afternoon was quickly doused but was still under investigation Monday, officials reported.
(Courtesy of Costa Mesa Fire & Rescue)

Fire & Rescue crews received a second fire call Saturday at around 1 p.m. of a brush fire that had broken out in the southwest corner of Costa Mesa’s Talbert Park.

Once on scene, firefighters quickly contained the flames, which, fueled by surrounding brush, had grown to an area of about 50 square feet.

“We were able to extinguish it in minutes, then we overhauled it for a good hour and a half to make sure it was put out well,” Noceti said. “We were lucky there was no wind, because wind could have blown some of the embers toward nearby houses.”

The cause of the fire was still under investigation on Monday.

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