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Harris fire fight in hand

Spring Valley, southern San Diego County:

Howard Windsor, incident commander with the California Department of Fire, told evacuees at Steele Canyon High School today that "I really believe we're getting the upper hand" on the Harris fire.

Windsor said fire crews had stopped the wildfire, which has burned more than 80,000 acres, from spreading further west, and had beaten it back eastward overnight as it tried to advance through Jamul.

California Department of Fire Captain Scott McLean said the fire was trying to move northeast. But while it is only 10 percent contained, there were no new evacuations and the fire was not threatening any new residential areas.

The strategy, McLean said, is to "try to get it wrapped and get a line behind it," and choke it off.

McLean said the humidity had risen from 9% to 17% since Wednesday, and he hoped it would continue to rise, helping the fight.

-- Ari Bloomekatz

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