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1,000 acres burn near Cajon Pass in San Bernardino County [Updated]

October 3, 2009 |  6:17 pm

U.S. Forest Service and San Bernardino County firefighters are battling a blaze in the eastern San Gabriel Mountains that ignited this afternoon and quickly scorched 1,000 acres, authorities said.

[Updated, 8:15 p.m.: Officials report the fire has grown to 1,500 acres.]

The fire, which started about 2 p.m., is centered in the Lytle Creek area east of Mount Baldy and west of the Cajon Pass. It was threatening 300 structures, many of them homes, Forest Service spokesman John Miller said.

[Updated, 6:31 p.m.: One firefighter suffered heat-related injuries in the fire, which is moving northeast and now threatens 400 mostly residential structures in the San Bernardino National Forest, Miller said.]

Fifty to 100 people have been evacuated through reverse 911 calls and door-to-door visits, Miller said.

[Updated, 7 p.m.: According to the Forest Service website, mandatory evacuations are in place for the following areas in Lytle Creek: Applewhite, Happy Jack and areas east of Lytle Creek up to and including Mountain Lakes RV Park. Mandatory evacuations also are in place for Swarthout Canyon and areas along California 138 between Interstate 15 and Hess Road.]

Authorities worry that thick chaparral, scattered timber and 60-mph winds would hamper their efforts to contain the fire.

"Whenever there is wind, there's trouble," Miller said.

-- Garrett Therolf

Photo: Smoke rises Saturday evening over the San Bernardino Mountains. Credit: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times