RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA (CBSLA.com) — A building at an airport for remote-controlled aircraft in Trabuco Canyon near Rancho Santa Margarita was destroyed and a caretaker burned, authorities said Monday morning.

The fire at the Trabuco Flyers facility at 32231 Trabuco Creek Road was reported at 11 p.m. Sunday, Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Steve Concialdi said. Firefighters had the flames out at 1:15 a.m.

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The building was fully involved in flames when firefighters arrived, Concialdi said. They went into a defensive mode, fighting the fire from the exterior, to try to keep the flames from spreading to the vegetation around the building. There was only a slight expansion.

“There were no fire hydrants in the area,” Concialdi said. “Firefighters had to send a water tender to the nearest hydrant to fill up and return to the fire.

“It’s sad. It (the building) has been out there for so long. It will be a total loss,” Concialdi said.

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It was not immediately clear how old the building was, but Concialdi called it “iconic.”

A caretaker who lives on the property was taken to Mission Hospital Regional Medical Center in Mission Viejo for treatment of minor burns, Concialdi said. Damage was estimated at $100,000.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

A group called The Trabuco Flyers has operated the airfield since 1990, according to its website. The group said in a notice on the site that the fire did not destroy its club house, but rather a property at the entrance to the airfield. However, Trabuco Flyers members may need to use another entrance to the airfield.

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