The Latest: Southern California fire burns 5 structures

AP News
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Posted: Jul 02, 2016 6:52 PM
The Latest: Southern California fire burns 5 structures

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on the wildfires burning in the U.S. West (all times local):

3:30 p.m.

A small but fast-moving brush fire that broke out on a Southern California hillside has burned five structures and injured three people.

A spokesman for the San Bernardino County Fire Department says the fire broke out in the northern part of the city Saturday afternoon and quickly spread to about 10 acres before firefighters got a handle of the blaze.

Capt. Jeremy Kern said authorities evacuated residents in the four blocks closest to the fire.

Kern said investigators were trying to determine what kinds of structures were burned and the extent of their damage.

Two firefighters and a civilian were treated for smoke inhalation or heat exhaustion.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

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2:05 p.m.

A massive wildfire that at one time hovered dangerously close to several eastern Arizona communities is now fully under control.

Fire officials said Saturday that a blaze that has burned almost 72 square miles of land, including on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation, is 100 percent contained.

They say recent widespread rain and monsoon season moisture helped crews.

Firefighters say some spots in the burned out area will continue to smolder but crews will patrol the perimeter for the next several days.

Roads leading into the fire area will stay closed because of the potential for flooding.

The blaze began June 15 and the cause has not yet been determined.

Cedar Creek, Pinetop-Lakeside and Show Low were among several communities that were under evacuation or pre-evacuation notice at one point.

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1:50 p.m.

A wildfire in central California is threatening up to 300 homes in a gated community.

Kern County fire officials say the blaze began Friday afternoon and has grown to 2.8 square miles.

Firefighters are focused on keeping fire from climbing over a ridge and potentially threatening 1,000 homes in Bear Valley Spring, a private community of 7,500 in the Tehachapi (teh-HAH-chah-pee) Mountains and several hundred homes in the Hart Flat community.

Officials say the fire is torching a large number of dead trees caused by California's four-year drought and a dramatic rise in bark beetle infestation. Firefighters are hampered by steep, inaccessible terrain, 20 mph winds and hot, dry weather.

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10:25 a.m.

A wildfire in Northern California threatening 2,600 structures in the Sierra foothills grew to more than five square miles Saturday.

The fire started Tuesday afternoon, rapidly growing as it charged through inaccessible terrain and climbed out of a steep canyon along the middle fork of the American River.

Authorities say at least 1,650 people have been forced from their homes as the blaze about 50 miles northeast of Sacramento threatens hundreds of homes, businesses and other structures.

No damage to structures has been reported. The fire is 12 percent contained.

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection says the Red Cross has set up an evacuation center in Auburn, near Sacramento.

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9:45 a.m.

A call for voluntary evacuation has been partially lifted as firefighters make significant progress in containing a southern Utah wildfire.

Fire officials say the blaze near Pine Valley, north of St. George, was 42 percent contained as of Friday night.

The voluntary evacuation now applies only to a small area of Pine Valley near where firefighters are still building a fire line.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office also opened the road into town to public traffic.

The fire, which has torched 2.4 square miles of rugged terrain so far, had previously forced evacuations.

According to law enforcement, property owners should be prepared to evacuate should conditions change.

The Pine Valley Recreation Area in the Dixie National Forest remains closed.

More than 550 firefighters are working on structure protection and other strategies to halt the fire from spreading.

The fire started June 13 with a lightning strike on Saddle Mountain.

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9:05 a.m.

A wildfire threatening up to 100 homes in central California has grown to 2.5 square miles.

Kern County fire officials say evacuation orders remain in effect Saturday for residents in the Bear Valley Springs community.

No structures have been burned and firefighters are focused on keeping the blaze from reaching Hart Flat, a community of about 5,000 people. Officials are warning people there to be on alert and prepared to leave their homes if necessary.

The fire, which broke out Friday afternoon, is about 60 miles south of a large and deadly blaze that started near Lake Isabella last week. That fire is 85 percent contained, and resources from it are being diverted to fight the new fire.