Firefighters continued working Friday to encircle a 250-acre wildfire that started south of Corona, initially threatening homes and prompting evacuation orders, all of which were lifted.
The non-injury “Skyline Fire” was reported shortly after 3 p.m. Thursday in the area of Skyline Drive and Burrero Way, at the foot of the Cleveland National Forest.
As of 3 p.m. Friday, Corona Fire Department officials said the blaze was 5 percent contained and moving slowly, mainly deeper into the preserve, away from residences.
An evacuation order that went into effect two hours after flames erupted impacted multiple streets. However, most evacuees were permitted to return to their properties about 10 p.m. By Friday morning, the order only applied to nearly 50 homes in the Mabey Canyon and Orchard Glen communities. Public safety officials announced Friday afternoon that all residents could return, though police were checking identification at several access points to ensure no one attempted to go into homes under false pretenses.
Foothill Parkway was reopened by noon, after police had shut it down between Lincoln Avenue and Paseo Grande for firefighting activity.
Corona Fire Department personnel took command on the fire lines overnight from Riverside County Fire Department staff, who were originally coordinating resources because the blaze broke out in an unincorporated swath bordering the national forest.
Along with county and Corona crews, Cal Fire, U.S. Forest Service and Riverside Fire Department personnel were deployed, with more than 200 firefighters working to contain the brusher. Air tankers and water-dropping helicopters were also making runs on the blaze.
A house on Trudy Way was in the path of the fire in the first two hours, and crews established a protective shield around the property, sparing it from damage. Other properties were threatened by the flames, leading officials to issue the evacuation order.
The cause of the fire was under investigation.