Hundreds Of Firefighters Battle La Tuna Fire

Sunday, September 3rd 2017, 12:27 pm
By: News 9

Fire officials say more than 58,000 acres have burned in a brush fire in Los Angeles.

Three structures have been lost, though no injuries have been reported at this point.

A man used a towel to try to fan away fast-moving flames creeping ever closer to his Los Angeles home. Several times he ran away but then returned, watching the fire devour his yard as firefighters dropped water from the sky.

The fire destroyed several structures in the area, fanned by erratic weather and wind.

"The wind can change direction, it can go 180 at 20 mph within a few minutes," said LA Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas.

Named the La Tuna fire, it's the largest blaze in terms of acreage in the history of the city. Mandatory evacuations were issued to hundreds of residents.

"All it takes is just a little bit of wind, and that's it, or an ember to blow."

Those driving on the 210 Freeway saw the fire raging dangerously close to the road before it was shut down.

"It's been about 45 years since we've had a fire in this area. So, we've known for a long time and firefighters have known for a long time that there's a lot of fuel in these mountains,” said LA Mayor Eric Garcetti.

Firefighters warned those under voluntary evacuations to be ready to leave within minutes.

"Be set, have your car positioned appropriately. Have your pets, your documents, your pictures, all the things you want to protect loaded up in your car," said Chief Terrazas.

Some of the more than 500 firefighters have been on the job for a day straight as they try to stop the flames from spreading further.