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Fireman, Plumber Hurt in San Juan House Fire

August 20, 1993|ERIC YOUNG | TIMES STAFF WRITER

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO — A firefighter and a plumber were slightly injured Thursday morning as they battled a fire that destroyed the second story of a home, authorities said.

The blaze began about 10:15 a.m. in the 29000 block of Spotted Bull Lane after the plumber's soldering iron ignited insulation in the basement, authorities said.

Plumber Robert Lewis, 31, ran from the basement and warned two family members who were at home, fire officials said. Judy Kurata, 30, and her brother, Patrick Kurata, 24, ran from the house and called the fire department with a cellular phone, Orange County Fire Department spokeswoman Maria Sabol said.

The flames raced up from the basement inside a wall and set a second-story bedroom and bathroom afire, Sabol said.

Lewis grabbed a hose from outside the house and sprayed the flames, but got too close and suffered second-degree burns on his hands. Paramedics took him to Mission Hospital Regional Medical Center in Mission Viejo, where he was in fair condition Thursday night.

County firefighter Manny Debaca, 31, of Perris, suffered cramps while fighting the fire and was taken to Mission Hospital. Hospital officials said they planned to release him Thursday night.

The family cat was trapped by the blaze but was rescued by a firefighter, Sabol said. It took firefighters about an hour to control the blaze, which caused an estimated $220,000 damage.

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