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Wildfire near Cajon Pass about 60% contained

August 23, 2011 |  8:14 am

Wildfire near Cajon Pass about 60% contained

Fire crews on Tuesday morning had 60% containment of a 400-acre wildfire that snarled traffic on Interstate 15 in the Cajon Pass the day before, authorities said.

“Today is going to have its own challenges. It’s going to be hot and dry,’’ John Miller, spokesman for the U.S. Forest Service, said Tuesday morning. “The plan is to hopefully button this up by tonight.’’

One lane of the northbound I-15 remained closed but could be reopened by Tuesday afternoon, he said.

Elsewhere in Riverside County, a grass fire near the town of Perris that forced the temporary evacuation of about 50 homes in the unincorporated community of Good Hope was completely contained by 3 a.m., the Riverside County Fire Department said.

That blaze, burned an estimated 190 acres. Authorities believe the fire was started by a welder at a metal salvage operation.

The Cajon Pass fire on Monday forced most of the lanes on busy Interstate 15 to be closed during the afternoon, which created a traffic nightmare, fire officials said. That fire destroyed one home and three small outbuildings. Two firefighters sustained minor injuries, and a resident suffering from a preexisting medical condition was hospitalized, authorities said.

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-- Phil Willon in Riverside

Photo: An air tanker drops fire retardant on a hillside behind homes in Riverside County on Monday. Credit: Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times

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