An inflamed palm tree, located across the street from the front entrance of the California Baptist University campus, shocked and awed student onlookers Thursday evening.
The fire began at approximately 9:15 p.m. and was quickly contained by the Riverside County Fire Department.
“[As] we approached this part of the campus, we noticed there was a fire across the street–close tothe senior citizen homes– and we just started directing traffic off our campus,” Rich Vargas, assistant director of public safety, said. “That’s basically what it is. It’s under control now.”
It is unknown at the time what started the fire.
Battalion Chief Mitch Wefche said the fire was not caused by natural means and the case has been turned over to an investigator. The fire is believed to have started from the base of the tree, rather than from the top.