A bird that flew into a power line sparked a grass fire at the Stanford Dish Tuesday night that threatened a structure and left one firefighter with a minor injury, a Palo Alto deputy fire chief said.
Crews from Palo Alto, Mountain View and Santa Clara County responded to the open space area around 9:45 p.m. initially on a reported structure fire, but the call was quickly changed to a grass fire, Deputy Fire Chief Catherine Capriles said.
The fire took place in a restricted area blocked from the public, not far from the Frenchmans Road and Genora gates off of Junipero Serra Boulevard, Capriles said.
The Palo Alto Fire Department had keys to access the gates and entered the property up Reservoir Road, eventually going off the path, with four-wheel drive vehicles, Capriles said.
Firefighters knocked down the blaze shortly after 10:30 p.m., she said.
The fire threatened a structure at the top of a hill, but firefighters gained control over the blaze and prevented it from spreading, Capriles said. Crews were unable to find out what type of building it was in the dark.
One Palo Alto firefighter was transported to Stanford Hospital for a minor foot injury, according to Capriles, who added that it was "part of the dangers of walking in this environment at night." She didn't have an update on his condition Wednesday morning, but expects he'll take time off from the job to recover.
Shortly after 10:30 p.m., the Palo Alto Fire Department said on Twitter that they were mopping up, which was expected to last for several hours, and cutting a line around the fire's perimeter. No damage was reported.
Stanford maintenance workers routinely mow at the property, which helped deter the fire from spreading, the deputy chief said.
Cal Fire units were also called for assistance, but quickly canceled when firefighters on scene gained control over the incident, Capriles said.
Cameron Gray tweeted a photo showing smoke coming from the fire visible for miles.
The damaged line belonged to PG&E, who was at the scene Wednesday morning along with a fire investigator, according to Capriles.
The Dish sits on the Stanford foothills known for a popular hiking and jogging trail. The area also hosts academic programs and wildlife in addition to sections dedicated to environmental protection and habitat conservation.
All trails at the Dish were closed until about 10:30 a.m., according to an alert from Stanford University's Department of Public Safety.