Crews continue to make steady progress against the 1,427-acre Chaparral Fire, which erupted at the edge of the Cleveland National Forest in southwest Riverside County and was 50% contained as of early Tuesday.
“Firefighting efforts will continue throughout the week as firefighters work to cool hot spots and build containment line,” Cal Fire San Diego tweeted late Monday.
Mandatory evacuations for residents north of the Tenaja Truck Trail, south of Calle Cielo, east of Calle Collado and west of Calle Be Bietol were lifted and reduced to evacuation warnings, which previously applied only to the area north of Tenaja Road, west of Calle Pino and Gallop Lane, south of Hombre Lane and west of Cleveland National Forest Road.
All residents can return to their properties, officials said, but only residents were allowed in the area.
The U.S. Forest Service said firefighters were strategically clearing brush to prevent the flames from spreading into thicker vegetation.
Two structures were burned the first day of the fire, which was reported at 12:45 p.m. Saturday in the Cold Springs area, near Tenaja and Cleveland Forest roads. A firefighter suffered minor injuries, according to the Riverside County Fire Department.
The blaze spans both Riverside and San Diego counties. On the Riverside County side, it was burning in the southwestern end of La Cresta, an unincorporated community at the foot of the Santa Ana mountains.
At the height of the blaze, four air tankers and multiple water-dropping helicopters were making runs on the flames. Along with USFS crews, personnel from the county, Cal Fire-San Diego, Murrieta Fire & Rescue, the Hemet and Corona fire departments were assigned to containment operations. Upwards of 532 firefighting personnel were onsite.