Firefighters Sunday began to have some limited success in battling a blaze that scorched 1,500 acres — originally reported as 2,500 acres — in the Angeles National Forest north of Glendora as the fire was 20 percent contained, according to the U.S. Forest Service.
The so-called Cabin Fire was reported shortly after 1 p.m. Friday off
Highway 39 near Rincon Red Box Road and forced some evacuations and resulted in some minor firefighter injuries, according to the U.S. Forest Service.
Officials earlier Saturday estimated that the fire had burned about 2,500
acres, but later downgraded that figure.
More than 460 firefighters were enduring triple-digit temperatures to
battle the blaze and establish containment lines, said USFS spokesman Joel
Fire crews from Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties were among those
assisting Angeles National Forest crews. Four helicopters and six air tankers
were attacking the flames today, Gonzalez said.
Three structures and an outhouse have been destroyed by the fire, and
five firefighters suffered minor injuries, according to the USFS.
Early on, one helicopter involved in the effort made an emergency
landing alongside a reservoir, possibly after clipping some power lines in the
area. The aerial attack was critical to the firefighting effort, thanks to
rugged terrain that limited the access of ground crews.
Within 30 minutes of ignition, the brush fire had spread to a cabin
nestled in the woods, and it quickly engulfed the structure. The fast-moving
fire also managed to jump Highway 39 as it pushed its way into the forest.
Firefighters were trying to get the western flank of the fire to
burn toward an area that burned last year and has less fuel, creating a natural
fire line to slow the spread, an official said.
Highway 39 was closed above East Fork Road and mandatory evacuation
orders were issued along the highway north to Angeles Crest Highway.
Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Vicki Gregory said about 40 people
were evacuated from Crystal Lake campground. The Coldbrook campground also was
evacuated, but it was unclear how many people were at the camp.
Glendora police sent an alert to residents about the fire, but said the
blaze appeared to be too far from the city to present any immediate danger.
Azusa police were also monitoring the fire. No evacuations were immediately
ordered in either city.
The South Coast Air Quality Management District issued a smoke advisory,
warning that air quality will reach unhealthy levels in smoke-impacted areas
in the mountains and downwind of the fire.
People in affected areas were being advised to avoid vigorous outdoor
activity, and people with respiratory or heart disease should remain indoors,
as should children and older adults, according to the AQMD.
—City News Service