Brush fire forces thousands to evacuate parts of Southern California


A brush fire breaks out in Orange County, California, on Sat., June 2, 2018.

CBS Los Angeles

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LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. — Around 1,500 residents in Laguna Beach’s Top of the World and Old Top of the World neighborhoods were forced to evacuate Saturday, CBS Los Angeles reports. A wind-driven brush fire has burned hundreds of acres and was threatening structures, authorities said.

The Aliso Fire, which was downgraded from 250 acres to 120 acres, was first reported at 1:07 p.m. local time in Wood Canyon behind Soka University, Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Tony Bommarito said.

According to Aliso Viejo city officials, mandatory evacuations began at 5:30 p.m. in Aliso Viejo, affecting nearly 2,000 homes in the area of Wood Canyon and Pacific Park drives. An evacuation shelter was to open at Aliso Niguel High School at 28000 Wolverine Way.

Residents from Laguna Beach’s Top of the World and the Old Top of the World neighborhoods were sent to the Susi Q Center at 380 Third St. in Laguna Beach.

Multiple fire engines are in place and more than 400 firefighters from OCFA and Long Beach Fire Department are on scene.

Both ends of Wood Canyon Road were closed and residents who left their homes were not allowed to return due to smoke and ash and a need to keep roads clear for first responders.

According to the Newport-Mesa Unified School District, Costa Mesa High School, which was scheduled to hold its prom Saturday at Soka University, was forced to postpone the event one week.

One firefighter has reportedly suffered a minor leg injury.

This is a developing story. Refresh this page or keep an eye on CBS Los Angeles for the latest updates.

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