Wind shift on wildfire forces new evacuations

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California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection air tanker dropping fire retardant. (AP Photo)

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection air tanker dropping fire retardant. (AP Photo)

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (AP/CNS) – Evacuation orders are under way for up to 250 homes in the mountains north of Los Angeles as erratic winds stoke a three-day wildfire.

Immediate evacuations have been ordered from San Francisquito Canyon Road up to Elizabeth Lake Road and areas south of Lake Hughes Road, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

U.S. Forest Service spokesman Ronald Ashdale says the wind has shifted in several directions Saturday, pushing the fire to 5,561 acres.
The blaze in the Angeles National Forest, northeast of Castaic, is 20 percent contained.

The fire is threatening the community of Green Valley, which was evacuated when the fire broke out Thursday afternoon. The evacuation order was lifted as nightfall brought improved conditions for firefighting.

However, Ashdale said the wind has changed course and could put the area in danger again Saturday evening.

Daytime temperatures topping at 105 degrees and erratic winds worked against the nearly 1,000 firefighters beating back the flames.

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