Story by Kimberly Beers, Jessica Boyer and Halie Cook
Hundreds of Southern California fire crews and law enforcement battled the nearly 400 acre Calgrove Fire Wednesday into Thursday.
Update 5:30 p.m.: About 415 acres burned and the Calgrove Fire is at 95 percent containment, according to a LACoFD tweet. Two Patrol Strike Teams will work throughout the night.
More than 24 hours after the initial call at 1:12 p.m. Wednesday, the Calgrove Fire is at 60 percent containment with no open flames being reported.
The fire was initially reported near I-5 freeway and The Old Road, just south of Calgrove Boulevard.
There was heavy traffic and closures along the I-5 freeway and The Old Road on Wednesday but there have not been any unusual reports of traffic since Wednesday night.
About 1,000 people from 500 homes, including the Crescent Valley Mobile Home Estates, were evacuated Wednesday. More than 90 horses had to be evacuated from ranches in the area, as well.
“It was pretty hectic. We were just trying to get the horses out,” said Tanner Rodriguez, a horse owner. “You looked up and there were flames everywhere. We had to walk from Wildwood Equestrian Center all the way down (to Hart Park).”
“All animals were evacuated to Hart Park and transported to a private home on Bouquet Canyon Road and Vasquez Canyon Road,” said Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Captain Roosevelt Johnson, in a press conference held Wednesday.
Some of the streets evacuated included Wildwood Canyon Drive, Champagne Lane, Green Crest Drive, Clearbank Lane, the SCV Senior Center on Market Street, Oak Bridge Lane, Davey Avenue, Eliott Lane, Roosevelt said.
More than 450 firefighters and law enforcement officials from all over Southern California, including the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station, Los Angeles County Fire Department, California Highway Patrol, Los Angeles city, U.S. Forest Service, CalFire, joined in the effort to battled the blaze.
A total of seven helicopters dropping water and four fixed-wing aircraft dropping fire retardant were on scene Wednesday afternoon, Tripp said.
Currently, there are two helicopters on standby, said Stephanie English, spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County Fire Department.
One structure was damaged by the blaze, said Los Angeles County Fire Department Deputy Chief John Tripp, in a press conference Wednesday, but it “appears the only damage is to the eaves of a garage.”
One firefighter fell and received burns from the fall, was transported to Henry Mayo Memorial Hospital and will be transported to a burn center, Tripp said.
“We’ve got five investigators at the point of origin, along the I-5 freeway. We’re going to do our best to determine what the cause was. We need to keep our situation awareness up of what’s going on in neighborhoods and what’s going on,” Tripp said, adding that Santa Clarita Valley residents need to stay tuned to the TV, radio, social media to stay up to date.
Fire officials are reporting Thursday that there are no new flames or smoke but the wind is blowing ash from Wednesday’s burn areas, giving the appearance of smoke, English said.
Firefighters will be checking the burn area for the next few days for hot spots and flare ups, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department,
LACoFD officials are planning to release another official update around 6 p.m. Thursday.