BANNING, Calif. (AP) – Firefighters continued to make progress overnight battling Southern California’s latest destructive wildfire, which burned 26 homes and threatened more than 500 others in the San Jacinto Mountains.
Riverside County fire’s Jeff La Russo said full containment of the more than 30-square-mile blaze is expected Monday.
The Silver Fire charred roughly 19,400 acres and is 75 percent contained. The fire stopped advancing Saturday as firefighters focused on extinguishing hot spots.
The blaze injured 10 firefighters and seriously burned a mountain biker who was overrun by the fast-moving flames when the fire erupted Wednesday.
At its peak, the fire forced the evacuation of 1,800 people, including 800 campers. Evacuation orders for several communities remain in effect; some campgrounds and trails are also closed.
Gov. Jerry Brown declared an emergency for the area Friday, freeing up additional funds and resources for the firefight and recovery.
Containment was initially expected by Sunday, but inaccessible terrain deterred firefighters from getting to certain hotspots. More than 1,800 firefighters continue to battle the blaze, with crews hiking two to three hours to get to the fire line, La Russo said.
Most of Southern California’s severe wildfires are associated with Santa Ana winds, caused by high pressure over the West that sends a clockwise flow of air rushing down into the region. The same area burned, pushed along with those infamous winds, in the 2006 Esperanza Fire.
This week’s fire, however, was fanned by a counter-clockwise flow around a low pressure area over northwest California. “It was basically the Esperanza in reverse, covering that same style of terrain,” La Russo said.
On Sunday, fire officials expected higher temperatures and lower humidity as a high pressure system from Texas moved into the area. More than 1,840 firefighters continued to work the blaze.
“We’re getting to the point now where we’ve got enough containment,” La Russo said. “Without a major weather pattern change, we’re not expecting anything to get further out of hand.”
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food
- 5 spring cleaning spots everyone forgets
- 5 reasons to look forward to watching the D-backs this season
- Common virus attributed to spike in head and neck cancers
- 5 signs it’s time to end your timeshare ownership
- 3 most overlooked ways to keep your home healthy
- 6 ways the air in your home could be making you sick