Los Angeles

‘Not Out of the Woods Yet': Crews Close in on Full Containment of La Tuna Fire

The fire has blackened more than 7,000 acres in the Verdugo Mountains

What to Know

  • Mayor Eric Garcetti declared the La Tuna Fire the biggest brush fire in LA history.
  • The fire is estimated to have scorched 7,000 acres since it started Friday afternoon.
  • The cause of the fire remained under investigation.

Crews were getting closer to full containment of the La Tuna Fire on Wednesday after gaining momentum on the blaze the day before.

By Tuesday night, firefighters were able to achieve 80 percent containment, and that figure remained the same as of mid-morning Wednesday, as 211 firefighters remained on scene, said Los Angeles Fire Department Capt. Erik Scott.

"We're not out of the woods yet," Scott said.

The blaze broke out Friday afternoon and forced the full shutdown of the 210 Freeway for two days.

Cooler temperatures and weekend rain coupled with lighter winds aided in the firefighting effort.

The fire has scorched 7,194 acres of brush around the Verdugo Mountains.

All mandatory and voluntary evacuation orders in Los Angeles, Glendale and Burbank were lifted as of Sunday night, which is also when the 210 Freeway was re-opened.

As of this morning, only two "soft closures" of roadways remained in effect, where only residents with identification will be allowed into neighborhoods, Scott said. They are in the areas of Foothill Boulevard and Kagel Canyon Street, and Foothill Boulevard and Osborne Street.

The fire, which at one point threatened about 1,400 homes, has destroyed five homes and five outbuildings, Scott said.

The cause of the blaze, described by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti over the weekend as the biggest in the history of the city in terms of acreage, remains under investigation, but officials said arson is not suspected.

Eight injuries were reported, including four firefighters and one civilian with heat-related illness, one firefighter with minor burns, one who suffered an allergic reaction and one civilian who suffered an eye injury. All have been treated and released, officials said.

On Sunday, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state emergency in Los Angeles County due to the fire. Los Angeles declared a local emergency Saturday.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously approved a proclamation of local emergency, which was to be forwarded to Brown's office to access state and federal assistance.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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