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SCVNews.com | Candle Tips Over in Trailer, Sparks 500-Acre Brushfire | 09-06-2011
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Unconfirmed reports at 3 p.m. said a house had started to catch fire at this location on Davenport Road. (Click image to enlarge)

A brushfire that started when a candle fell over in a trailer Monday afternoon and ultimately consumed 500 acres in Agua Dulce was 70 percent contained as of 10 a.m. Tuesday. The fire is in mop-up mode and there are no active flames, a Los Angeles County Fire Department spokesman said.

One firefighter from Station 73 in Newhall experienced heat exhaustion and was airlifted to Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital. The injury was characterized as minor.

Unconfirmed reports said a second firefighter sustained a minor injury while attempting to traverse a difficult mountain trail. Two ambulances were requested to stand by in case of additional injuries.

The so-called Wagon fire broke out Monday at 12:55 p.m. east of Sierra Highway, near the intersection of Davenport Road and Wagon Wheel Road, when a candle fell over inside a trailer and lit the curtains on fire. SCV Sheriff’s Lt. Tom Bryski said the occupant received a minor injury while trying to snuff the flames.

Photo by Elliott Cohen for SCVNews.com (Click image to enlarge)

The fire spread to nearby brush. Winds of approximately 7 mph pushed  it in a southeasterly direction toward Agua Dulce proper.

The incident was quickly upgraded to three-alarm status, and 300 firefighters were called in to attack the flames.

Other than the trailer and a nearby barn, there were no confirmed reports of additional structure fires.

However, an unconfirmed report came in shortly after 2 p.m. Monday when an off-duty firefighter said a building was on fire at 32935 Canyon Quail Trail, just off of Darling Road. It was not believed to be a house. Structure protection crews responded immediately.

Horses (lower right) wait to be evacuated as aircraft drops Foscheck near Davenport Road in Agua Dulce. Photo by Elliott Cohen for SCVNews.com (Click image to enlarge)

Photo by Elliott Cohen for SCVNews.com (Click image to enlarge)

A second unconfirmed report about an hour later indicated a house was starting to catch fire at 11891 Davenport Road, close to Twin Peaks Storage. Fire crews fought hot spots in that location into the evening hours.

Ten engines were committed to structure protection as of 3:30 p.m. Monday, several moving to Barber Road and Corder Road as the fire pushed south and east toward central Agua Dulce. A strike team set up at the intersection of Barber and Bedworth Road, northwest of Agua Dulce Elementary School.

Animal Control was called in to assist with equestrian evacuations at the intersection of Darling and Barber.

No human evacuations were ordered, although some residents along Davenport Road voluntarily left, said Inspector Don Kunitomi of the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Local roads, including all of Davenport, were open to residents with identification only. Non-residents were allowed in to help evacuate horses.

No, that's not a volcano ... It's the view from Canyon Country at 3 p.m. (Click image to enlarge)

While not requested, CAL FIRE crews responded to the fire and were assigned positions. The L.A. City Fire Department provided a strike team. The U.S. Forest Service helped out and there were unconfirmed reports that a Kern County crew manned a bulldozer line.

Officials from the federal Bureau of Land Management were on scene Tuesday, monitoring fire supression activity on a small piece of federal land.

A command post was initially set up Monday at Davenport Road and Agua Dulce Canyon Road, later moving to the south entrance of the Agua Dulce Airpark. Five helicopters staged at the airport, and two Super Scoopers helped battle flames.

Several people reported seeing smoke in the Ana Verde subdivision in western Palmdale, but it was residual smoke from the Wagon incident.

At 1:34 p.m. Monday, a separate fire was reported in the backyard of a home north of Crown Valley Road in Acton, near Vasquez High School. It was characterized as small and non-threatening.

 

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