Freeway closed by brush fire

SOUTH GLENDALE — Firefighters doused a quick-moving 3-acre fire that threatened two homes Wednesday on the southbound Glendale (2) Freeway near Colorado Boulevard, officials said.

A vehicle that caught fire at approximately 1:55 p.m. spread into light grass and brush on the freeway hillside, then moved up and over the hill close to two homes on the 1500 block of Verd Oaks, officials said. Firefighters arrived to find a pale yellow pickup truck ablaze. The driver was not in the area. Officials said an investigation into the fire is ongoing.

“The flames were so high,” neighborhood resident Bill Celentano said. “Closer than I ever wanted to see.”

No structures were damaged and no injuries were reported, Glendale Fire Capt. Stuart Stefani said.

Glendale police evacuated the homes while fire crews battled the fire in breezy conditions, he said.

Two Los Angeles City Fire Department helicopters dumped water on the flames as firefighters attacked the fire, he said. The blaze was extinguished about 2:35 p.m., but crews remained for the mop up.

A Sigalert was issued for three southbound lanes, which were closed for roughly three hours, backing traffic up past the Ventura (134) Freeway.

About 120 firefighters, including 12 Los Angeles fire engines, two trucks, five Glendale fire engines, one Burbank fire water tender, two battalion chiefs and a rescue ambulance, responded to the fire, Stefani said.

Resident Jacqueline Thrash took photographs of the fire crews as they battled the blaze.

“I opened up the door and I saw flames,” she said.

Fire crews were already battling the blaze, but Thrash said she called for help and more firefighters responded for backup.

Fire officials have already started clearing brush from hillsides and slopes in preparation for high winds and drier weather conditions during the summer months.

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