Two homes destroyed, a third damaged. Red Cross helping victims

Firefighters said the two-alarm fire in South Taft Friday caused $200,000 as it destroyed two houses and a trailer and damaged a third house.

The American Red Cross has been contacted to assist the families displaced by the fire, the Kern County Fire Department said.

The cause is still under investigation.

In all it took a total of 26 firefighters with six engines and a ladder truck an hour to finally control the fire.

Dispatchers received the call about 11:20 a.m.

As soon as firefighters left Station 21 on Tenth Street, more than a mile away from the fire, they noticed a column of heavy black smoke and a second alarm was started, bringing in equipment from as far away as Old River and Bakersfield.

One home was completely engulfed in fire and an adjacent house and trailer was about 40 percent involved when firefighters arrived and fire was spreading to a third structure.

After the fire was knocked down, crews searched the burned structures but found no victims.

High temperatures and downed power lines to the rear of the burning structures complicated firefighting efforts.