RANCHO CUCAMONGA (CBSLA.com) — Crews Wednesday were battling an approximately 1,000-acre brush fire in the San Bernardino National Forest that has damaged at least one home.
The Etiwanda Fire was reported around 8:08 a.m. in Etiwanda Canyon, just north of Rancho Cucamonga, the U.S. Forest Service said.
Heavy winds continued to fan flames late into the evening, with fire officials reluctant to release containment estimates after gusts reached 60 mph and the area was placed under a red flag warning.
The brusher was also being fueled by unseasonably warm temperatures and dry vegetation.
USFS said Wednesday night one home sustained minor exterior damage. Two firefighters sustained minor injuries, according to the agency.
The fire is under unified command between USFS, CAL Fire, Rancho Cucamonga Fire Protection District and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department. Approximately 700 personnel were on scene, including 30 engines and 18 crews, according to officials.
KNX 1070’s Claudia Peschiutta reported earlier Wednesday authorities were concerned the flames could take a turn for the worse if the wind gusts continue.
“The big challenge on these fires is the wind and the unpredictability, and with winds like this we can’t put up aircrafts. It’s just too dangerous. So we try and figure out where it’s going to end up and put our resources there,” Bob Poole of the USFS said.
Approximately 1,650 homes were evacuated after authorities issued mandatory orders for all areas north of Wilson from Etiwanda Avenue and west to the wash. Mandatory evacuation orders were lifted at approximate 5:30 p.m.
Voluntary evacuations were in place for the areas east of Haven Avenue to Carnelian Street and north of Hillside Road.