Evacuation orders were lifted Wednesday for hundreds of homes in the Corona area that were initially threatened by Canyon Fire as containment grew to 35 percent.
Full containment of the 2,000-acre blaze on the Riverside-Orange county border is expected by Sunday, authorities said.
Evacuation orders were lifted at 10 a.m., ending the uncertainty facing about 1,500 residents of 500 homes just off the Riverside (91) Freeway in Corona. All roads were reopened in the area.
The fire broke out about 1 p.m. Monday alongside the eastbound Riverside Freeway, just west of Green River Road in west Corona, and initially spread at a “moderate” rate to Coal Canyon Road off the freeway, said Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Steve Concialdi.
The fire began spreading at a “rapid rate” around 3 p.m. Monday, fanned by Santa Ana winds blowing at 20 to 25 mph. By Monday night, it had charred about 2,000 acres, damaged a single-family home and a big rig and was only 5 percent contained, Concialdi said.
The blaze was being fought by about 1,900 firefighters from the Anaheim, Corona and Los Angeles County fire departments, the OCFA, U.S. Forest Service and Cal Fire.
Twelve helicopters and five air tankers were assigned to the firefight, Concialdi said.
At the fire’s height a DC-10 air tanker was deployed.
Fire crews confirmed that one house was damaged by the flames. Two other structures also were damaged.
A Corona police officer directing traffic was injured by a hit-and-run driver about 8:30 p.m. Monday at Green River Road and Montana Ranch Road, according to Corona police Detective Andy Bryant.
David Shaheen, 53, of Corona, was booked on suspicion of felony hit-and- run for allegedly driving around traffic control barriers at the intersection and hitting the patrol officer, Bryant said. The officer was taken to a hospital, treated and released, Bryant said.
“Fortunately for him he was wearing his helmet because he hit his head on the ground,” Bryant said of the officer.
Shaheen posted bail and was released, Bryant said.
The Corona Norco Unified School District cancelled classes at seven schools Wednesday — Coronita Elementary School, John Adams Elementary School, Cesar Chavez Academy, Prado View Elementary School, Eisenhower Elementary School, Citrus Hills Intermediate School and Franklin Elementary School — due to evacuations, road closures and poor air quality.
All other district schools were open, including Corona High School, but were on an inclement weather schedule due to poor air quality, officials said.
The schools would be open on Thursday, officials announced.
–City News Service
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