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UPDATE: Officials Determine Cause Of Fire At Temecula Valley High School

All students were evacuated from the campus after the fire broke out Wednesday at 10:03 a.m.

UPDATED at 2:07 p.m.

The cause of Wednesday's fire at Temecula Valley High School on Rancho Vista Road that prompted an evacuation has been determined, an official has announced.

During an auto shop class at the campus Wednesday morning, students were working on a vehicle that backfired and sparked the blaze.

"Firefighters responded to a fire in the wall of the auto shop ... the cause of the fire was determined to be from hot carbon particles from a vehicle backfire into the exhaust system," said Jody Hagemann, Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department spokeswoman.

The fire was reported at 10:03 a.m. and was contained at 10:33 a.m., according to Hagemann.

No injuries were reported.

The loss was estimated at approximately $10,000 with an estimated save of $4,000,000, Hagemann said.

Approximately 500 students were evacuated prior to firefighter arrival. All students and TVHS staff were eventually evacuated from the campus, confirmed Temecula Valley Unified School District spokeswoman Melanie Norton.

The evacuation lasted for more than an hour as school officials waited for fire crews to deem it safe to return to classrooms.

At 11:50 a.m., Norton confirmed students and staff had returned to campus.

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department was called to assist with traffic control at the scene, according to Deputy Albert Martinez.

V.W.D.S. January 31, 2013 at 03:54 PM
well I seriously doubt that the district wants any liability of keeping students in a dangerous situation. That said - it must have been exactly as they stated, under control and no one in jeapordy or else they would have fully evacuated. I trust that by sheer fear of lawsuit they aren't going to keep your kid in a potentially dangerous situation. - ya think? Really, you can always go down and check your kid out if you are that concerned. I'm sure they would LOVE THAT.
Susan Marsh January 31, 2013 at 06:03 PM
Exactly Wendy! Unfortunately your observation and suggestion would require common sense; which seems to be a lost concept.
Shannan Buffolino January 31, 2013 at 07:12 PM
Alright alright now, everyone, lets try to be a little nicer to each other...keep in mind..moms are going to worry more about their babies, and after so many recent tragedies, we are a little more sensitive..so let's let it go...on the other hand, our schools here are extremely proactive in alerting parents and getting our kids to safety when something happens, so there was no reason to frivilously call parents, have them drive at high speeds, chaos picking up kids, when they had already known the cause was from a car spark in auto body shop, and had it contained fast. It wasnt like they didnt know why the place was on fire, and it was in one area, This happens a lot in auto body..lol..so lets all stop arguing, let's smile that it was something minor, ...and be a little more understanding of each others reasons for being the way they are. It's all good..:)
JJ Mclure February 01, 2013 at 04:39 PM
the kids work on teachers cars that are too cheap to pay the kids.
Stephanie February 08, 2013 at 05:42 AM
Really??? When I went to school there were no cell phones. OMGosh I wonder how are parents survived while we were in school. HAHAHA! Drama! My kids went to that school and they were very happy to get out of class for a little while. People really crack me up. I know that things have been scary lately, but kids with cell phones create more drama then necessary. TVHS staff did a great job and have been doing a great job keep the kids safe. Thanks to all the firefighters as well!

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