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SAN DIEGO COUNTY DIGEST

Oceanside

October 25, 1987

An unidentified Mexican died Thursday at UC San Diego Medical Center of burns he suffered when his hut caught on fire, and a second Mexican was in critical condition with burns covering more than 60% of his body, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Raul Lucas, 32, and the unidentified man, who was in his mid-20s, were transported by Life Flight to UC San Diego Medical Center's burn ward shortly after midnight Thursday, Oceanside police Sgt. Bill Krunglevich said.

The man, who had third- and fourth-degree burns over 94% of his body, died at 2:03 p.m. Lucas was listed in critical condition with third-degree burns covering two-thirds of his body, the hospital spokeswoman reported.

Fire broke out when a candle was apparently knocked over in the plastic-covered wood hut where the men lived, on an agricultural field east of Wilshire Road and north of North River Road in Oceanside, Krunglevich said.

"Everyone was awaken by screaming as they (the two men) attempted to get out of the hut," he said. "Apparently the candle was knocked over or ignited in some fashion with some combustable objects that started the fire."

Lucas was found in a semi-conscious state 30-feet from the hut. The second victim was found in a water-filled ditch 25-yards from the hut.

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