Courtesy Kern Co. Fire Department
Crews have built containment lines around most of a 612-acre wildfire north of Los Angeles that threatened canyon homes near the Grapevine area of Interstate 5.
Fifteen homes were evacuated Tuesday after the fire began along the side of the freeway and quickly ran up a brushy ridge. Kern County fire spokesman Corey Wilford said the evacuations were lifted Tuesday night, but the department is still concerned for homeowners' safety.
"We do classify the 25 residences up there are still threatened," Wilford said. "We want to keep a heightened sense of alert to the residents up there. There's still smoldering fires down below. They're still mopping it up. We're going to keep them at that threatened state until we get full containment."
Wilford says the blaze in an area of unincorporated Lebec is 75 percent contained. Full containment is expected Wednesday evening.
Investigators are still looking into what may have sparked the blaze.
"We had storms the day before, so there's always a possibility that it was caused by nature," said Wilford. "There's power lines that run above where the fire started. It's also right next to a freeway. So there are so many variables, so many causes that it could be."
Meanwhile, crews are in mop-up mode at the scene of a 10-day-old wildfire in the mountains above Palm Springs.
The blaze that blackened 43 square miles of the San Jacinto Mountains is 91 percent contained and is only smoldering.
At its peak, the fire burned seven homes and forced 6,000 people to evacuate.