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Fires doused as high winds whip through SCV

Posted: January 9, 2014 7:06 p.m.
Updated: January 9, 2014 7:06 p.m.

This photo taken by Saugus resident Donna Spencer shows one of the Super Scoopers making a water drop on a small brush fire in Saugus on Thursday.

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Afternoon winds that howled through the Santa Clarita Valley Thursday kept fire crews busy as they jumped on two small fires in Newhall and Saugus.

At 2:58 p.m. a fire was reported in the 22400 block of Pamplico Drive in Saugus, according to Inspector Tony Akins of the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

More than 100 firefighters responded to the first alarm blaze, as well as four helicopters and the two Super Scoopers on loan from Canada.

That fire was held to around 1.5 acres. No injuries were reported and no structures were threatened.

A separate grass fire was reported in Newhall near Lyons and Peachland avenues, which reportedly shut down Lyons Avenue briefly.

“That was knocked down within 10 minutes,” said Inspector Keith Mora.

Winds blew steadily between 20 and 25 mph Thursday afternoon, gusting up to 40 mph, according to the National Weather Service.

The wind was forecast to die down somewhat overnight with winds settling in around 15 mph on Friday.

Evan Thomason, a spokesman with the city of Santa Clarita, said around 5 p.m. Thursday that the city had received a few reports of downed tree limbs when winds picked up in the afternoon.

He said anyone who sees a tree or limb that has fallen in a way that blocks the roadway or presents a safety risk can contact the city’s Urban Forestry division at (661) 290-2222.

It wasn’t just trees that fell victim to Thursday’s winds. A billboard fell over a wall separating the Metrolink railroad tracks and a business between 15th Street and 16th Street and Railroad Avenue in Newhall.

Roger Kale, owner of the nearby Mov N’ Spa, said the billboard fell over his property at approximately 4 p.m. due to high winds.

Kale was letting his dog outside in a gated area connected to his property when he saw the billboard fall over.

“I ran outside to take the dog to the bathroom and saw the billboard topple over Aurora (the dog),” said Kale.
At approximately 4:30 p.m., a representative from Metrolink arrived to assess the damage.

No one was injured.

Signal staff writers Ryan Fonseca and Luke Money and Signal photographer Charlie Kaijo contributed reporting to this story.



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