Large Brush Fire Threatens Moreno Valley Homes

Two brush fires that broke out Wedensday in the hills on the eastern edge of Moreno Valley merged, together scorching about 250 acres, authorities said.
More than 100 Riverside County firefighters, supported by air tankers and helicopters dropping water and fire retardant, were working to contain the blaze, which by 6 p.m. was burning into the Lake Perris Recreation Area.
The campground was evacuated and shut down as a precaution, according to the Riverside County Fire Department. 
A sheriff's deputy spotted two brush fires around 3:45 p.m. One blaze was burning toward Mare Lane and Gelding Way, just south of the Moreno Valley campus of Riverside Community College, and the other blackened open space near Via Del Lago and Iris Avenue.
Fire department spokeswoman Cheri Patterson said the fires came together along a ridge. The coupling of the fires decreased the demand on fire crews and their resources, allowing them to focus attention on a smaller area, Patterson said.  

There were initial reports the Mare Lane blaze was approaching unoccupied homes, but no structures were damaged.
"We've had dry conditions in this area, but we're fortunate in that we don't have a lot of wind today," Patterson said.
No injuries were reported.
Sheriff's deputies shut down access to all roads south of Iris Avenue, where fire crews were staging.
"We're being very aggressive with this fire," Patterson said.
The cause of the blaze was not immediately known. There was no word on when it might be contained.

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