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Heat, high winds work against firefighters battling Santa Clarita blaze

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Firefighters are working for a second day to put out an 870-acre brush fire in Santa Clarita, but excessive heat and high winds are making containment of the blaze a tricky task. (KABC)

Firefighters are working for a second day to put out an 870-acre brush fire in Santa Clarita, but excessive heat and high winds were making containment of the blaze a tricky task. Nevertheless, crews were able to make significant progress beating back the flames.

The fire stood at around 75 percent containment at 6:15 p.m. Monday and the acreage decreased to 760 from 870, according to officials.

Though multiple structures, including homes and a fire station, were threatened by the brush fire, no injuries were reported. The blaze did, however, prompt a temporary shutdown of Highway 14 and several evacuations on Sunday.

All roads were set to reopen at 8 p.m., according to Los Angeles County fire officials. Officials urged drivers to exercise caution in the burn area.

Firefighters will be working throughout the night Monday.

The blaze was reported about 12:47 p.m. Sunday after a vehicle hit a tree in the area of Highway 14 and Placerita Canyon Road, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. The flames quickly spread from the crash site to nearby brush.

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Santa Clarita residents were shaken by how close the Placerita Fire got to their homes on Sunday.


No injuries were reported.

PHOTOS: Placerita Fire burns near homes in Santa Clarita


Due to high winds and scorching temperatures above 100 degrees, the fire pushed out of control, jumping to both sides of the 14 Freeway, fire officials said.

More than 250 personnel were on the scene as the fire remained at 750 acres for a few hours and then spread to 870, according to L.A. County sheriff's officials.

By 4:45 p.m., the northbound side of the 14 Freeway was back open, and the southbound side opened less than an hour later. The fire remained at 50 percent containment Sunday night and was at 57 percent Monday afternoon.

At least one structure, described as a "prop" building, was destroyed in the Disney Ranch area, where there was also a power outage as a result of the fire. Sheriff's officials said 76 homes were impacted by the outage.


As the fire approached homes in the area, residents began to pull buckets of water from their pools in an attempt to douse the flames.

"We're all safe and that's all that matters right now. We're very happy, very thankful. It was very scary," said one resident.

A red flag warning for the area remains in effect until 9 p.m. Monday due to the hot, dry and windy conditions.

Related Topics:
brush firefireSanta ClaritaLos Angeles County
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