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Fire crews gain upper hand in Catalina blaze as brush fires flare across Southern California [Updated]

May 2, 2011 |  8:09 pm

Firefighters appeared to be gaining the upper hand Monday evening in their efforts to stop a wildfire that had scorched about 30 acres on Catalina, officials said.

[Updated 9:30 p.m.: The Catalina fire was about 40 acres and 30% contained, officials said.]

The blaze was one of several that broke out across Southern California as warm, offshore winds blew across the region. Tujunga Brush Fire

Earlier in the day, a brush fire in Tujunga Canyon briefly threatened six homes before it was knocked down by about 70 firefighters and water-dropping helicopters, the Los Angeles Fire Department said.  The blaze burned an acre before it was contained about 3 p.m.

In San Luis Obispo County, crews were able to contain a brush fire that burned about 185 acres of grass and light brush near Shandon, about 18 miles east of Paso Robles.

That blaze was battled by crews from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and the Kern County Fire Department, officials said.

In the Catalina fire, a strike force was dispatched Monday evening to assist crews with mopping up hot spots burning in heavy vegetation, the Los Angeles County Fire Department said.

The crews were being transported by barge and were expected to arrive about 1 a.m. Earlier in the day, about 100 firefighters were also sent by barge to help battle the blaze.

Firefighters and water-dropping helicopters fought the fire Monday afternoon as it briefly threatened the Catalina Yacht Club.


Brush fire burns on Catalina, threatens yacht club

— Robert J. Lopez

Twitter: @LAJourno

Photo: Helicpoter attacks Tujunga Canyon blaze. Credit: Los Angeles Fire Department