Southland prepares for fire season, high temperatures

With temperatures on the rise, Southern California was bracing for the arrival in earnest of fire season.

On Monday, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's Altadena station announced that the fire danger level in the Angeles National Forest had risen from "high" to "very high" — the fourth of five levels on the scale. Meanwhile, Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich announced the opening of 55 cooling centers across Los Angeles County to provide relief from the heat for the elderly.

And as if on cue, three brush fires broke out across the Southland on Monday afternoon.

The largest, in the Waterman Canyon area of the San Bernardino National Forest, had burned more than 75 acres by Monday evening. Authorities had begun voluntary evacuations and closed California 18 in both directions between 40th Street in San Bernardino and California 138, the U.S. Forest Service said. The fire was about 30% contained.

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-- Matt Stevens and Rick Rojas, Los Angeles Times


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