The Coast News Group

Fire at Hawthorne Machinery does minor damage

4S RANCH — On Oct. 6 at 1:29 p.m. firefighters from the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Protection District responded to a water flow alarm at Hawthorne Machinery, at the corner of Camino San Bernardo and Willow Court in 4S Ranch. Upon arrival they saw smoke coming from a large, industrial paint booth used to paint earth-moving equipment. Further investigation revealed that a fire had broken out in the paint booth’s filtration system but had been contained by the activation of one fire sprinkler.
One employee was in the booth when the fire broke out but was able to evacuate safely when he saw the smoke.
“The building, which is worth approximately $750,000, sustained only $500 in damage,” Fire Marshal Cliff Hunter said. “If not for the properly functioning fire sprinkler, the outcome could have been much different and the damage much more severe.”
Firefighters remained on scene for approximately two hours to ensure the fire was extinguished and assist with the investigation and clean up. Three fire engines and two battalion chiefs from RSFFPD responded to the incident. They were assisted one ladder truck, two fire engines, and one battalion chief from San Diego Fire and one ambulance from San Diego Medical Services. The cause remains under investigation.