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Highway 395 reopened as firefighters make progress in Inyo wildfire

March 19, 2011 |  9:14 am

Firefighters are making progress in battling a 2,000-acre wildfire southwest of Big Pine. Officials said Saturday morning the blaze 35% contained.

The fire prompted the closure of state Highway 395 between Bishop and Independence, authorities said. The highway has now reopened.

The fire broke out around 3:19 p.m. Friday, and by 8:30 p.m. it had jumped Highway 395 near Big Pine. More than 200 firefighters have been called to the blaze, according to the Cal Fire website.

About 300 homes were threatened, and mandatory evacuations are underway for all areas west of Main Street in Big Pine and the Night Manor, Rolling Green and Terrace neighborhoods, officials said. Voluntary evacuations are in effect on the eastern side of Highway 395 near Big Pine.

Full containment is expected by Sunday.

-- Catherine Saillant