Crews gain upper hand in brush fires near Azusa and in Cajon Pass

Fire crews appear to have gotten the better of two large brush fires that broke out this week in the Southland: the Madre fire burning in the mountains above Azusa and the Sierra fire smoldering in Cajon Pass.

As of early Thursday morning, the Madre fire was 90% contained, according to the U.S. Forest Service. The Sierra fire, meanwhile, was 80% contained.

The 268-acre Madre fire broke out Monday in San Gabriel Canyon north of Highway 39 in steep terrain that made it difficult for ground crews to reach. But an aerial attack proved effective and officials moved up the date they expect full containment to Friday from next week.

Crews were able to make the progress despite a high-wind warning from the National Weather Service for the region through Thursday morning.

Three firefighters who suffered minor injuries while battling the blaze were back on the front lines, the U.S. Forest Service said.

The Sierra fire burning in the Cajon Pass was first reported Tuesday afternoon near Glen Helen Road, according to the U.S. Forest Service, and quickly burned through 200 acres.

Mandatory evacuations have since been lifted for nearby residents as crews get a handle on the blaze.

U.S. Forest Service officials expect full containment of the Sierra fire Thursday.

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