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7,300-acre Bond fire in Orange County is 50% contained

Smoke dims the sun as a helicopter drops water. Firefighters use hand tools to cut a fire break on a hillside.
Firefighters cut a fire break Thursday as a helicopter drops water on the Bond fire in Orange County’s Silverado Canyon.
(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

A wind-driven brush fire in Silverado Canyon in Orange County that was sparked by a house fire and had burned 7,375 acres was 50% contained Sunday, with some residents still under evacuation orders, authorities said.

The Bond fire has destroyed 28 structures and damaged 19 more, the Orange County Fire Authority reported. Evacuation orders remain in place for Modjeska, Silverado and Williams canyon areas.

Firefighters continued to look for and mop up hot spots while clearing more vegetation around the fire and shoring up the containment lines, the fire agency said. Some 1,588 firefighters were still assigned to the blaze, and officials warned that there was still a potential in many areas for a strong wind event to spread the fire and threaten adjacent communities.

Meanwhile in L.A. and Ventura counties, Santa Ana winds are expected to kick up Sunday night, continuing through Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service. A red flag warning will be in effect for much of the region from 4 a.m. Monday through 10 p.m. Tuesday due to the high winds and low humidity.

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Winds were also expected to pick up again Monday in the inland Orange County area, with gusts up to 45 mph.

Evacuation orders from the Bond fire were lifted for Foothill Ranch and Portola Hills west of El Toro and north of the 241 toll road.

All evacuation orders were lifted for Lake Forest, but the city remained under an evacuation warning.

Voluntary evacuations remained in effect for the following areas:
• Borrego Canyon
• Baker Ranch
• Portola Hills
• Live Oak Canyon
• Trabuco Canyon
• Rose Canyon
• Valley Vista Way
• Meadow Ridge Drive
• Cowan and Lemon Heights

Evacuees were strongly encouraged to stay with family or friends or in a hotel, according to the OCFA. The authority said on Twitter that, due to COVID-19, no congregate shelter was offered. A temporary Orange County Red Cross evacuation point at Santiago Community College was later replaced by one at El Modena High School, also in Orange.

Officials also opened another Red Cross evacuation point at El Toro High School in Lake Forest.

OCFA Chief Brian Fennessy urged residents to be prepared to move when necessary to clear the way for firefighters to battle the blaze.

“Even if you don’t see smoke ... if you have a concern the flames are a little bit too close, that’s enough to have your belongings prepared to evacuate,” Fennessy said. “You don’t have to wait for us to call.”


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