Brush Fire Breaks Out in Sepulveda Basin Area

ENCINO (CNS) - A fire tore through about 10 acres of thick brush in the Sepulveda Basin today and displaced as many as 100 homeless people, some of whom watched as the flames consumed their tents and belongings.

The blaze was reported about 3:30 p.m. in the 6300 block of Balboa Boulevard near Balboa Park, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Ground and air crews battled the blaze as the flames gobbled up tents that dotted the area.

The Metro Orange Line busway was shut down between White Oak and Woodley avenues, as was Burbank Boulevard between Balboa Boulevard and the San Diego (405) Freeway, according to the fire department and reports from the scene.

Several small explosions could be seen as the fire burned homeless encampments and at least one vehicle. About a half-dozen propane tanks exploded, hampering firefighters' efforts, according to the fire department.

By about 4:45 p.m., the bulk of the fire was knocked down and no open flames were visible.

Homeless services officials were called to the scene to help relocate those displaced. The Red Cross was also reported to be deploying teams to the area.

No injuries were immediately reported, but crews were continuing to go through the burn area checking for possible victims.

Teams with bulldozers were expected to remain on scene well into the night.

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