Updated as of 8 p.m.:
A Saturday afternoon grass fire came incredibly close to a south Pleasanton neighborhood, but a quick response by firefighters, combined with precautions taken by homeowners, helped avoid what could have been a disasterous blaze.
Photos uploaded to Pleasanton Patch by two readers show flames just feet from homes, heavy smoke and firefighters marching along the ridge to battle the blaze.
The fire started around 5 p.m. on the hill between the rows of homes along Independence Drive and Amanda Street, said Livermore Pleasanton Fire Battalion Chief Jack Nieman-Kimel, burning about 8 acres.
Nieman-Kimel says that although the fire was between houses, no homes were threatened because of the fire breaks created by the homeowners beforehand.
"The homeowners had left us a defensible space of about 40 to 50 feet," Nieman-Kimel said. "No civilians or fire personnel were injured during the fire."
Nieman-Kimel says the cause of the fire is unknown, and it is believed that it started in the middle of the field between the homes.
A homeowner named Susan told Patch she noticed the smell of smoke in her house just before 5 p.m.
"By the time we called 9-1-1, the police said it had already been reported," Susan said. "The fire engines were here very soon after, and told us to evacuate. They evacuated the whole street. I was surprised the fire made it all the way to Bernal."