HomeNewsLocalCrews Increase Containment of Post Fire; Some Evacuation Orders Lifted

Crews Increase Containment of Post Fire; Some Evacuation Orders Lifted

GORMAN (CNS) – Firefighters are steadily gaining the upper hand on the massive Post Fire in the Gorman area north of Los Angeles, increasing containment to 47% Thursday, and some evacuation orders were lifted or modified to evacuation warnings.

The fire increased slightly to 15,690 acres Wednesday night and weather conditions were expected to cooperate through Thursday, with temperatures in the low 70s and decreased winds. But temperatures are expected to rise into the 90s this weekend with humidity levels possibly dropping into single digits, below 10%.

Firefighters extended containment lines Tuesday, and a red flag warning for critical fire conditions expired Tuesday evening, with forecasters saying winds had fallen below advisory levels.

The fire, which broke out Saturday, prompted the evacuation of about 1,200 people from the Hungry Valley State Vehicular Recreation Area. Evacuation orders also were given for Pyramid Lake and Oak Flats Campground.

As of 10 a.m. Thursday, evacuation orders remained in place for areas south of Gorman Post Road, west of Interstate 5, east of the Los Angeles County line and north of Pyramid Lake, officials said.

Also as of 10 a.m. Thursday, evacuation orders were lifted for Cas Paradise Ranch and Goldenstate B. And an evacuation order was converted to an evacuation warning for areas south of Pyramid Lake, west of Interstate 5, east of the Los Angeles County line, and just north of Templin Highway.

Meanwhile, Pyramid Lake remained closed to the public.

The following road closures were in place:

— Northbound Interstate 5 at state Route 138;

— Southbound Vista del Lago Road at the entrance to the Vista del Lago Visitors Center;

— Eastbound Castaic Lake Drive at Ridge Route Road.

One commercial property has been destroyed, while 10 are being threatened, along with 50 single-family residences, fire officials said.

Authorities are officially reporting one injury from the fire, although no details were released.

The blaze is being battled by a unified command that includes the U.S. Forest Service, Angeles National Forest, the Los Angeles County Fire Department and Ventura County Fire Department. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, California State Park Services, Los Angeles County Office of Emergency Management, Cal Fire and California Highway Patrol were also providing support.

“Crews continue making progress on the perimeter of the Post Fire … allowing teams to focus more on the interior terrain,” officials said in their Thursday morning update. “Crews continue seeking out isolated smoke and heat sources that produced small flare ups (Wednesday). Increased temperatures are expected over the next several days and into the weekend which make these areas a priority.”

The South Coast Air Quality Management District issued a wildfire smoke advisory for the Santa Clarita and Castaic areas, with northwesterly winds expected to push smoke from the fire southeast toward Santa Clarita, the San Fernando Valley and parts of the Angeles National Forest.

The SCAQMD advised people in the area to limit their exposure by remaining indoors with windows and doors closed or by seeking immediate shelter, avoid vigorous physical activity and to run their air conditioners or air purifiers.

“It’s best to avoid using swamp coolers or whole house fans that bring in outside air,” the agency said. “Residents should also avoid burning wood in their fireplaces or firepits. And, if they absolutely must be outside, a properly fit N95 mask or P100 respirator may provide some protection.

The Post Fire started at about 1:45 p.m. Saturday at Ralph’s Ranch and Gorman School roads, near the Golden State (5) Freeway, Los Angeles County Fire Department spokesman Craig Little told City News Service.

Some 1,747 personnel wee involved in the firefighting effort.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

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