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CA wildfire contained

A wildfire that blackened more than 2,000 acres in Southern California and threatened enclaves of expensive homes was fully contained Tuesday, the Orange County Fire Authority reported.

BY STAFF REPORT | ANAHEIM HILLS, Calif. | March 13, 2007

A wildfire that blackened more than 2,000 acres in Southern California and threatened enclaves of expensive homes was fully contained Tuesday, the Orange County Fire Authority reported.

The fire, which began Sunday morning, had forced the evacuation of more than 500 homes in Orange and Anaheim Hills.

Officials said the Windy Ridge Fire was fully contained at noon PDT. They said full control of the blaze, meaning there was no threat of it jumping containment lines, was expected by 6 p.m. Wednesday.

Two outbuildings were destroyed in the blaze and one home with a wood shake roof had some roof damage, a fire department spokesman said. Two firefighters suffered minor injuries; there were no injuries to civilians.

The fast-moving fire erupted in the tinder-dry hillsides of Orange County. High temperatures, low humidity and wind gusts of up to 41 mph helped fuel the blaze. Firefighters were able to get a handle on the blaze overnight as temperatures moderated and humidity increased.

Most of the 1,200 residents who fled their homes were allowed to return by late Sunday night and by Monday all orders for mandatory evacuations had been lifted.

More than 800 firefighters battled the blaze from the ground and from the air with four air tankers and four helicopters. Officials estimated it cost $1.5 million to battle the blaze.

Officials said the fire was arson and was started when someone set fire to an abandoned car that had been stolen.

The blaze forced the closure of several roads, including southbound State Road 241 at the 91 Freeway. The fire began at the SR-241 Windy Ridge toll plaza at 7:53 a.m. and quickly spread to the west.


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