3 houses, 1 golf course keep firefighters busy

Fires on Sunday evening kept Modesto firefighters busy as they rushed to three threatened homes and a grass fire at the Del Rio Country Club.

A house on the 500 block of 14th Street was gutted by an accidental fire just after 7 p.m. that caused $150,000 in damage, said Batallion Chief Hugo Patino of the Modesto Fire Department.

During the fire, an electrical wire above the roof burst "like metallic blue fireworks" and was left hanging above the alley several feet from the house, said neighbor Dave Chapa.

Other firefighters headed to the 2000 block of Boulder Creek Drive. Their quick work saved two houses, said Battalion Chief Rich Sasser. The fire started in debris between the houses. Firefighters doused the flames before much damage occurred.

Modesto firefighters also helped the Salida Fire Protection District with a half-acre fire on Del Rio's golf course. The fire started in San Joaquin County and jumped the Stanislaus River at 3:45 p.m., said Capt. Doug McCullough of the Salida agency. Wild grass and brush between the fairways of the seventh and eighth holes burned. The course will not be closed, Patino said.

Bee staff writer Emilie Raguso can be reached at eraguso@modbee.com or 578-2235.