Rescue off Highway 39

AZUSA — A 74-year-old man who was trapped overnight after his SUV plunged 125 feet off of Highway 39 was rescued by helicopter Monday morning.

Family members reported the man missing Sunday night, officials said.

“He’s in pretty good shape for a 74-year-old who was down there in the cold all night,” Los Angeles County Fire Battalion Chief Jim Geandee said.

Story and video by reporter Thomas Himes:

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Morris Fire burn area detailed

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It’s 45% contained this morning, but the Morris Fire five miles above Azusa has the potential to cause problems throughout the week as temperatures continue to soar.
Here’s our latest story from James Wagner. Attached are videos, a map and photo galleries.

ANGELES NATIONAL FOREST – An explosive, heat-driven wildfire burned its way up San Gabriel Canyon Road on Wednesday, blackening more than 1,700 acres above Azusa and threatening more. Meanwhile, a second fire emerged several miles west along the Angeles Crest Highway above La Caada Flintridge.

Temperatures near 100 degrees and relative humidity in the single digits fueled the Morris Fire, which started Tuesday afternoon on the side of the weaving mountain road above Azusa. By Wednesday evening officials said it was only 10 percent contained.

“It definitely has the potential to grow,” said Pam Bierce, a spokeswoman with the Southern California Incident Management team, the federal government agency that is coordinating the firefighting effort.

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Second fire reported at Angeles Crest Highway

ANGELES NATIONAL FOREST — A wildfire stoked by an unrelenting heatwave burned its way up Azusa Canyon Road Wednesday blackening more than 750 acres and a “rapidly moving” second fire threatened to close the Angeles Crest Highway several miles north of Morris Dam.

Officials late Wednesday ordered mandatory evacuations for dozens of residents along the East Fork of the San Gabriel River, and could offer no estimate as to when the blaze might be contained.

“It definitely has the potential to grow,” said Pam Bierce, a spokeswoman with the Southern California Incident Management team, a federal government agency that is coordinating the firefighting effort.

As of 3:30 p.m. the fire was 10 percent contained but a second blaze threatened homes as far north as the Angeles Crest Highway, officials said.

An evacuation center has been set up at El ROble Imtermediate School, 665 North Mountain Avenue in Claremont has been established for those residents who are being escorted down from the canyon by deputies with the Los Angeles COunty Sheriff’s Department.

A disptacher with Angeles National Forest Fire Service said the second blaze is west of the Morris Fire and that they have “full brush” on it and LA County Fire responded as well.

The second fire was reported at Mile Marker 29 on the Angeles Crest Highway. It was reported at 3:23 p.m. as a brush fire, a Los Angeles COunty Fire Department inspector said.

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Red Flag warning issued in San Gabriel Mountains

Here’s a bulletin from the National Weather Service for Azusa, where a 700 acre wildfire continues to burn above Morris Dam:

AN UPPER LEVEL RIDGE OF HIGH PRESSURE OVER SOUTHERN NEW MEXICO WILL
WILL CONTINUE TO BUILD...AND SLIDE OVER SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA BY
FRIDAY. ALONG WITH WEAKENING ONSHORE FLOW...THIS WILL BRING A RETURN
TO HOT AND DRY CONDITIONS OVER MOST OF SOUTHWEST CALIFORNIA. THE
WARMEST TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED THURSDAY THROUGH SATURDAY...WHEN
WIDESPREAD TRIPLE DIGIT TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED OVER THE INTERIOR
AND VALLEY SECTIONS OF THE SOUTHLAND. TEMPERATURES UP TO AROUND 106
DEGREES ARE EXPECTED IN THE HOTTEST LOCATIONS. A FEW TEMPERATURE
RECORDS COULD BE BROKEN.

SINCE THE ONSHORE FLOW IS EXPECTED TO BE FAIRLY WEAK WITH THIS
HEAT EVENT...EVEN THE WARMEST INLAND PORTIONS OF THE COASTAL PLAIN
WILL LIKELY SOAR INTO THE 90S. THE BEST RELIEF WILL BE NEAR THE
IMMEDIATE COAST WHERE TEMPERATURES WILL REMAIN IN THE 70S AND 80S.

THE AIR MASS IS EXPECTED TO BE FAIRLY DRY THROUGH THIS WEEK.
ALTHOUGH THIS SHOULD HELP KEEP HEAT INDEX READINGS FROM REACHING
CRITICAL LEVELS...HUMIDITY READINGS WILL FALL INTO SINGLE DIGITS
OVER THE INTERIOR VALLEYS AND MOUNTAINS. THIS WILL BRING HEIGHTENED
FIRE WEATHER CONCERNS...ESPECIALLY TO THE MOUNTAIN AREAS WHERE
LITTLE TO NO OVERNIGHT RECOVERIES ARE EXPECTED. SOME SUB-TROPICAL
MOISTURE MAY RETURN TO SOUTHWEST CALIFORNIA THIS WEEKEND...WHICH
COULD HELP HUMIDITIES RECOVER ABOVE SINGLE DIGITS.

THE LONG DURATION HEAT EVENT COULD POSE HEALTH HAZARDS FOR ANYONE
OUTDOORS...ESPECIALLY FOR THE ELDERLY...SMALL CHILDREN...AND PETS.
IF YOU PLAN ON BEING OUTDOORS...REMEMBER TO REMAIN HYDRATED BY
DRINKING PLENTY OF WATER...WEAR LOOSE-FITTING CLOTHING AND A
HAT...AND REMAIN IN THE SHADE OR INDOORS AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE.

NEVER LEAVE CHILDREN OR PETS IN CARS WITH THE WINDOWS UP OR
CRACKED DURING THE DAY...EVEN FOR A VERY SHORT TIME...AS
TEMPERATURES CAN QUICKLY REACH LETHAL LEVELS.

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Wildfire grows in Azusa Canyon — 10 percent contained

Some reports have listed the Morris Fire at 700 acres this morning. The state’s Inciweb site maintains that the blaze has consumed 275 acres. 

As many as 600 firefighters are on scene. Sheriff’s personnel are conducting voluntary evacuations along East Fork Road as a precaution. Here’s the complete InciWeb update from 11 hours ago:

Incident Overview

Morris Fire started at 4:27 pm and is burning in San Gabriel Canyon near Morris Dam on the Los Angeles River Ranger District.



Basic Information

Incident Type Wildfire
Cause Under Investigation
Date of Origin Tuesday August 25th, 2009 approx 02:27 PM
Location Hwy 39 MM20 and MM21
Incident Commander Loring Buchwald

Current Situation

Total Personnel 600
Size 275 acres
Percent Contained 10%
Fuels Involved

Medium Brush and Chaparral

Outlook

Terrain Difficulty

Steep

Current Weather

Wind Conditions 3 – 5 mph NW
Temperature 74 degrees

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Wildfire scorches 25 acres in Azusa Canyon near East Fork *

With a header visible throughout the San Gabriel Valley, a wildfire is burning out of control in Azusa Canyon near Morris Dam and East Fork Road. Preliminary data indicates the fire has burned about 25 acres. Several news helicopters are hovering above the brusher.

Here’s the Inciweb link to the fire which says:
Morris Fire started at 4:27 pm and is burning in San Gabriel Canyon near Morris Dam on the Los Angeles River Ranger District.



Basic Information

Incident Type Wildfire
Cause Under Investigation
Date of Origin Tuesday August 25th, 2009 approx 02:27 PM
Incident Commander Div. 2

Current Situation

Total Personnel 145
Size 50 acres

Current Weather

Temperature 84 degrees

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