VENTURA COUNTY (CBSLA.com) — Firefighters continued to battle a 250-acre brush fire on Monday near Ojai.
According to the Ventura County Fire Department, about 100 firefighters were sent around 1:15 p.m. on Sunday to the 22000 block of Maricopa Highway in the Los Padres National Forest.
“Our strategy to brush fires is to hit is hard and hit it fast so that we keep the fire small,” said LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas.
At this time, no homes or structures have been threatened by flames. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
Terrazas announced the signing of a $3.5 million, 150 day contract for the use of a heli-tanker as part of the LAFD’s front line during the critical summer months.
“These tankers are capable of dropping 2,600 gallons ,” said L.A. City Councilman Mitch Englander.
“This year we’re being very cautious about letting our resources get too far away,” added Terrazas. “We’re keeping them on a short leash so in case something happens here we can pull them back.”
Meanwhile, more than 9,000 firefighters continue to battle more than 20 wildfires burning across California.
Gov. Jerry Brown has subsequently declared a state of emergency for the state and has activated the California National Guard.
The Rocky Fire, located just north of Sacramento, has been burning for six days.
Officials explained firefighters from around the state, including crews from Long Beach, are battling dry vegetation and erratic winds there.
The brush fire erupted on Wednesday amid record heat, and has since doubled in size while destroying dozens of homes.
According to firefighters, high fire danger is expected to continue with lightning and gusty winds in the forecast for many parts of the state.