The massive Rancho Cucamonga Fire – which is still raging – had only been partially contained by Thursday afternoon, after having spread across over 1,000 acres of land. The fire was reported on Wednesday evening, but rapidly grew in size due to the strong Santa Ana winds which produce very dry air and high temperatures.
Due to these strong winds, which reached 80 mph, helicopters and fixed-wing tankers were grounded, making fighting the fire more complex.
Even though it was even hotter and drier today, fire teams were able to make much more progress than they had when the Rancho Cucamonga fire broke out last night. Fire Chief Mike Bell said: “We anticipate a good day, hopefully nothing will happen.”
The fire teams are hoping to stem the blaze before it reaches the ridges between Day and Deer canyons. Fortunately, no injuries have been reported so far, but one house was damaged by the flames.
Mandatory evacuation orders were issued for 1,600 homes on Wednesday, but this was later downgraded to voluntary evacuation.
Weather forecaster Miguel Miller said about the Rancho Cucamonga fire: “The bad news is, we’re going to have some tough, hot, dry, windy conditions to fight that fire, and in case any other fire gets started, it’s going to spread quickly. The good news is, conditions will improve this afternoon.It’s going to be sunny and smoky.”
He added that the winds should subside by the afternoon, and with any luck, turn to just a light breeze by nightfall. Red Flag warnings were extended by the National Weather Service through Thursday morning, which warned that temperatures could reach as high as 100 degrees in Los Angeles.
Even though a lot of damage has been done, the Rancho Cucamonga fire should be brought under full control by the local fire teams who are collaborating to fight the massive blaze.