Monday, August 31, 2009
The U.S. Forest Service says a wildfire in the mountains north of Los Angeles nearly doubled in size overnight and continues to threaten a broadcasting antenna complex and thousands of homes.
Spokeswoman Dianne Cahir says the fire had burned 85,760 acres of brush and trees by early Monday - 134 square miles. The fire in the Angeles National Forest was only 5 percent contained before making its overnight run.
It's a half-mile from Mt. Wilson, a ridgetop center that includes many broadcasting antennas and an observatory. Crews planned to set backfires to slow its advance and planes have dropped retardant around the towers.
At least 18 homes have burned and 12,000 are threatened in a 20-mile stretch from Pasadena to Acton.
Two firefighters also have died.
The Los Angeles County Fire Department says that the two firefighters killed in a crash as they battled a huge wildfire were a 47-year-old captain from San Bernardino County a 35-year-old firefighter from Palmdale.
Capt. Mike Savage says the two killed were Capt. Tedmund "Ted" Hall of San Bernardino County and Specialist Arnaldo "Arnie" Quinones of Palmdale.
The two men were killed when their vehicle rolled down a mountain side amid the intense flames on Mount Gleason near the city of Acton.
Authorities have not given a cause for the crash.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Reported By: Jimena Martinez
Fire crews are now battling seven fires that have scorched more than 1,000 acres each.
The Gloria Fire is burning in the Salinas Valley and has scorched about 64,000 acres since it started Thursday.
It is 90% contained.
Two structures have been destroyed and 100 other homes are threatened. Stonewall Canyon Road will remain without power through Sunday night because of burned power lines.
The newest fire to spark in Northern California Sunday afternoon has been dubbed the "Forty-niner Fire."
It has scorched several homes and burned about 500 acres.
Meanwhile the Station Fire burninig near Los Angeles is forcing thousands to flee their homes.
The fire has burned about 42,000 acres since it sparked four days ago.
As of Sunday night it was only 5% contained.
Fire officials say three homes have burned but that number continues to grow.
Three residents and one firefighter have been injured.
Governor Schwarzenegger cautioned residents Sunday.
"There was, again, people that did not listen and there are three people that got burned and really badly injured because they did not listen," said Governor Schwarzenegger.
Officials say the fire is close to Mount Wilson which is the site of a historic observatory. Transmitters for every major television and radio station in the area are also located in that area.