Lake Fire update: Crews report 75 percent containment

Courtesy of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriffs Department

Update 8:00 a.m.: Fire up to 700 acres, crews reach three-quarters containment

A brush fire burning near Castaic Lake has consumed about 700 acres, and officials said it was 75 percent contained.

The fire started in light brush off Interstate 5, north of Lake Hughes Road in Castaic. It was reported just before 1:30 p.m. Friday.

No injuries have been reported.

Update 6:15 p.m.: Crews make progress on containment

L.A. County fire officials say they've been able to make some headway on the fire burning near Castaic Lake. 

In a tweet, the LA Fire Department spokesperson says the fire is now 20 percent contained, and has reduced its assessment of the fire's size, from 600 to 575 acres.  

Update 5:14 p.m.: Fire size nearly doubles

Los Angeles County Fire Inspector Keith Mora says the fire continues to burn in a northeast direction towards Castaic Lake.

“We’re still doing an attack on the ground," he said. "Our fixed-winged has been grounded at this point just due to visibility with low power lines. Once the smoke resides  and they can see clearly through their path, they’ll go back into the air—barring that there is daylight still. And we do still have copter making drops too.”  

But even though evacuations have been lifted for area residents, the news isn't all good.. The fire has doubled, according to the L.A. County Fire Dept.:

Update 4:52 p.m.: Evacuations lifted

Santa Clarita Sheriffs officials tweeted evacuation orders  for 19 homes on Elk Ridge Rd and Vista Point Place have been lifted.

Update 4:33 p.m.: Fire grows to 350 acres

The fast-growing fire in Castaic has now reached 350 acres, according to the L.A. County Fire Dept.:

Update 4:26 p.m.: 350 acres burning, fire changing direction

LA County Fire Inspector Keith Mora said the fire burning in Castaic, just north of Santa Clarita, has now burned at least 250 acres.

Mora said crews were able to get the fire burning away from a school in the area, and that it's currently not directly threatening homes, though 19 residences on Elk Ridge Rd and Vista Point place have been evacuated as a precaution. 

"At one point it did get within 100 yards of the school," Mora said. "We did get it to go in kind of a [northeast] direction away from the school. Now it's just posing a slight threat to that community and that's why the evacuations were done by the sheriffs department"

There is currently no number on containment.

Update 3:26 p.m.: More evacuations underway

The Santa Clarita Sheriffs Department tweeted that they're beginning to evacuate 19 homes near Elk Ridge Road  and Vista Point Place.

The department also reported that the evacuation of Northlake Hills Elementary is nearly complete.  Some children have been bussed to Sunshine Day Care in Stevenson Ranch to await their parents.

Update 3:20 p.m.

Firefighters are working to steer a 40-acre brushfire away from an elementary school moments before school was set to let out for the day.

Los Angeles County firefighters say the blaze is burning in light brush off Interstate 5 north of Lake Hughes Road in Castaic. It was reported just before 1:30 p.m. Friday.

The fire was creeping toward Northlake Hills Elementary for a time before crews attacked the flames from the air and ground.

L.A. County Fire Inspector Scott Miller said crews are dealing with difficult conditions.

"The terrain is sloppy terrain with white flashy fuels. We have winds of about 10 miles an hour with gusts of 15," Miller said. "We have hand crews. We have fire crews doing fire suppression. We have helicopters,  and we have fixed-winged air craft all making a coordinated attack and making rapid progress on the fire."

Deputies are taking the children to a safe location down the road so parents can pick them up.  The flames were redirected, however, and county sheriff's Sgt. Brian Allen says the students were released to their parents without incident.

The fire is not threatening any homes. The 5 Freeway remains open. But Ridge Road is closed at Pine Crest Lane.

Firefighters say they don't know how the fire started.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. | Clarification: In an earlier version of this story we quoted L.A. County Fire Inspector Chief Mora as saying the fire was burning in a northwestern direction. LA County Fire Dept. has since clarified they meant northeastern.

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