October 13, 2008

Fight Against Wildfire Continues

Firefighters backed by water-dumping helicopters and planes gained ground Sunday on a wildfire that has destroyed two homes and forced the evacuation of about 1,200 people in a rugged area 20 miles north of downtown Los Angeles.

The blaze has charred about 750 acres, also consuming a garage, several sheds and three motor homes, said Los Angeles County Fire Department spokesman Ron Haralson. No one was seriously injured.

- The Associated Press

gusting winds

Powerful Santa Ana winds were expected to arrive in the evening, and gusts could spread embers, igniting brush, grass and chaparral in the area.

About 450 homes were evacuated early Sunday when the blaze moved southeast toward city limits, said U.S. Forest Service spokesman Stanton Florea. sanctuary at risk

The fire was 20 percent contained as it burned south of the Wildlife Waystation, an animal sanctuary and rehabilitation facility set on 160 acres.

The nonprofit agency houses more than 400 animals, including lions, bears and deer. Officials were loading up the animals in case the fire switched direction.

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