Helicopter dropping water
A helicopter drops water on the Creek Fire. Courtesy Los Angeles County Sheriff

Crews are nearing containment Tuesday in their struggle against the Creek Fire, which has destroyed dozens of homes and scorched more than 15,600 acres in the hills above Sylmar.

The blaze was 98 percent contained Tuesday morning. Full containment was expected on Saturday, according to Cal Fire.

The wind-driven blaze broke out at 3:42 a.m. a week ago Tuesday. Over the weekend, more than 1,700 firefighters continued to patrol the area in Sylmar and improve lines of cleared vegetation.

About 330 firefighters and other personnel were assigned to the blaze Monday. Crews will continue to reinforce the containment line Tuesday while patrolling for hotspots, authorities said.

The fire has destroyed 60 homes and 63 outbuildings, damaged another 55 homes and 26 outbuildings, and scorched 15,619 acres, Cal Fire reported. Currently, 2,500 structures continue to be threatened.

Three firefighters suffered minor injuries.

All evacuation orders were lifted at 6 p.m. Friday. Evacuation orders first issued Tuesday affected about 150,000 households citywide, according to Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who said “thousands upon thousands of homes” had been protected.

All roads have reopened, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Virginia Padilla, whose family owns a ranch in Sylmar, told reporters the fire killed at least 30 of the ranch’s horses.

Padilla said she and her family were able to get out of her home just in time Tuesday morning but were not able to take their horses with them.

All Los Angeles Unified School District schools in the San Fernando Valley and some on Los Angeles’ Westside — a total of 265 district schools and charter schools — were closed Friday. The schools reopened Monday.

Minimal fire activity was reported Monday, but there were still smoldering isolated pockets of heat within the interior of the fire perimeter.


—City News Service

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