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Santa Clarita brush fire burns 25 acres [Updated]

August 8, 2010 |  4:17 pm

A brush fire broke out Sunday afternoon near the intersection of Copper Hill Drive and Haskell Canyon Road in Santa Clarita, fire officials said.

The fire, which began before 2 p.m., has grown to 25 acres, though no structures have been lost or threatened, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

No evacuations had been ordered.

[Updated at 4:11 p.m.: Evacuations have been ordered for 50 homes in the area, according to the L.A. County Sheriff's Department.]

[Updated at 7:00 p.m.: The Los Angeles Sheriff's Department has arrested three individuals in connection with the brush fire in Santa Clarita valley; one charged with arson and the other two for obstructing firefighters.


The fire has grown to 43 acres but is 60% contained, according to the fire department. The fire was declared a "knock down" at 4:30 p.m., meaning there are no visible flames. About 30 homes were evacuated, said Sheriff's Dept. Capt. Mike Parker.

Witnesses reported seeing two juveniles running from the origin of the fire shortly after it began and about an hour and a half later a sheriff's deputy detained two 14-year-old boys matching the description, Parker said. One of the boys admitted he was smoking marijuana using a barbecue lighter, when he dropped the lighter in the dry brush. He and his friend, who came after, tried putting it out by stomping on the fire and when that was unsuccessful, they ran away, Parker said. The boy was charged with arson and his friend was let go.

Another juvenile, a 16-year-old boy, and a 33-year-old man, Anthony Fierro, of Saugus, were arrested after they defied repeated orders to move away from the fire, Parker said. The pair, who were not together, displayed "a complete lack of common sense" by putting themselves in danger as well as preventing helicopters from dropping water on the blaze, he said.

“They seem to have some extraordinary desire to be close to the fire,” Parker said. “This is extremely unusual.”]

-- Raja Abdulrahim

Photo: A brush fire broke out Sunday afternoon in the Santa Clarita Valley. Credit: Kirk McCoy / Los Angeles Times