Crews Struggle With Big Sur Blaze

NBC NEWS/KSBW
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POSTED: Wednesday, December 18, 2013 - 7:00pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, December 18, 2013 - 7:09pm

California forest fire destroys fire chief's home, remains at 5% containment. Felix Cortez reports.

(KSBW) The "Pfeiffer" forest fire in Big Sur, California has burned more than 500 acres and was 5 percent contained as of late Monday night, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

At least 15 homes were destroyed, officials said.

One of the homes destroyed belonged to Big Sure Fire Chief Martha Karstens.

"It still has not sunk in. I just haven't absorbed it all yet," she said. "I walked out the door to go to a fire I thought was somewhere else. There was ashes and sparks going right by my front door."

The fire was too much to handle for the Big Sur Volunteer Fire Brigade so as many as 400 firefighters from around the state were called in to fight the flames.

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