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Fire in San Gabriel Mountains reduced to hotspots, 48 percent contained

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The Williams Fire that's been burning for several days in the San Gabriel Mountains has been reduced to a handful of hotspots, officials said Wednesday. 

The fire, which first erupted Sunday night, has burned 4,180-acres so far and left several firefighters with minor injuries, is now 48 percent contained, according to Angeles National Forest spokesman Nathan Judy. 

Officials say there's not a lot of actual fire burning at this point, only smoldering hotspots. Low temps and higher humidities Wednesday helped blunt the fire's progress, along with a DC-10 heavy aircraft that crews used to paint the area ridgeline, helping to keep the fire from spreading. 

Firefighters completed a containment line on the southern portion of the fire, Judy said. He added that no more structures are under threat. 

Permanent residents can expect to be allowed back into their homes Thursday morning at 9 a.m. — though they'll need a valid ID, Judy said. 

“They will need to meet law enforcement at the bottom of the canyon and they will be escorted up into the residence and they will be able to re-occupy the area," said Judy. "They will need to have a photo I.D. to get into the area. And those are permanent residents only.”

Vacation and recreational home residents won't yet be allowed back in. Recreational users who were evacuated and left their camping gear and other personal items behind will be able to meet up with law enforcement on Saturday at 9 a.m. to reclaim their gear. Officials will be at the bottom of the canyon at 100 N. Old San Gabriel Canyon Road. They'll also need to have photo ID.

They'll be escorted into the canyon by law enforcment and will have an hour to gather their belongings. Then they'll be escorted back out. After that, Judy warns, non-residents won't be allowed to return until officials open the canyon back up to visitors. 


With contributions from Eric Zassenhaus

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