Massive Wildfire Flares up in Sylmar

November 14, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
A wildfire burning in the foothills north of Sylmar was reported at 10:30 p.m. Friday night.The fire quickly flared up and burned several hillsides north of where the 118 and 210 freeways intersect at the base of the Angeles National Forest, just above Veterans Memorial County Park.

The fire reportedly has burned approximately 100 acres. At least three homes were burned in the fire.

No evacuation orders have been issued, but an evacuation center has been set up at Sylmar High School, at 1350 Borden Ave.

The fire's western flank could be seen slowly encroaching on a group of homes in a Sylmar neighborhood. At least three homes were on fire, according to initial reports. Dozens of others appeared to be threatened.

L.A. City and County fire departments were at the scene Friday night battling the flames. A staging area has been set up near El Choriso Regional County Park. About 20 fire engines responded to the fire call Friday night, according to an L.A. Fire Dept. spokesperson.

Water-dropping helicopters were also on scene.

Water-dropping helicopters had to deal with violent Santa Ana winds amplified by the foothills terrain, slowing down the pace of the battle. The winds are not expected to die down until mid-day Saturday.

The fire appeared to be dying down slightly at the base of the foothills, while the tallest flames could be seen racing up the hillsides toward the surrounding peaks.


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