A 200-acre brush fire on the south side of Banning forced road closures, injured one firefighter and threatened to spread into the San Bernardino National Forest before crews halted the forward march of the blaze.
The fire was reported at 2:20 p.m. in a field near a campground and school in Banning in the 100 block of Westward Avenue, near San Gorgonio Avenue, according to the Riverside County Fire Department.
As of late afternoon, the fire was 10% contained. Fire officials proclaimed at 4:40 p.m. that the forward spread of the fire had been halted. One firefighter suffered minor burns and was taken to a hospital.
Crews from Riverside County and the Calimesa Fire Department responded to the fire, encountering flames moving at a moderate rate toward the KOA Campground, just west of Banning High School. The school and campground were promptly evacuated.
An evacuation warning was issued for residents in the area between state Route 243 on the south and Charles Street on the north, between South Hathaway Street and San Gorgonio Avenue, but the warning was lifted by early evening.
An evacuation center had been established in conjunction with the Red Cross at the Albert A. Chatigny Senior Community Center, 1310 Oak Valley Parkway in Beaumont.
The fire prompted the Banning Police Department to close Westward Avenue between 12th Street and San Gorgonio. State Route 243 was closed from Smith Creek to Poppet Flats, Caltrans announced.
Cal Fire water-dropping helicopters were originally making runs on the fire, but most air tankers were diverted to a much larger wildfire burning to the northwest, around Lytle Creek, in San Bernardino County.
The cause of the blaze was not known.