UPDATE: 8,000-Acre Saddleridge Fire 43 Percent Contained

KNX 1070
October 14, 2019 - 12:00 pm

 Students will be back in class Monday in schools across the northern San Fernando Valley that were closed on Friday because of the nearby Saddleridge Fire.

Officials now say 17 structures were destroyed but it's not clear how many of them were homes.

The number of damaged structures has climbed to 58.

Investigators are checking out reports that the fire might have started under a SoCal Edison tower in Sylmar.

But fire expert Robert Rowe tells CBS-2 it's too soon to assume that the flames seen there were sparked by a falling power-line:

The wind-driven brush fire, now called the Saddleridge fire, exploded in size Thursday night from Sylmar to Porter Ranch.

The raging blazed caused more than 100,000 people to be evacuated, damaged or destroyed more than 30 structures, has burned 7,500 acres, and cost two people their lives.

Sunday, firefighters are seeing progress and the fire is 71% contained, with 1,011 acres still burning. 

All evacuation orders were lifted and authorities have started allowing residents return to their homes.

State and local officials signed emergency declarations in response to the devastating wildfires Friday night. 

In Northern California, the lights are back on for 98% of customers who lost power when Pacific Gas & Electric switched it off in an effort to prevent wildfires.

The blaze was reported just after 9 p.m. Thursday off the westbound Foothill (210) Freeway near Yarnell Street and Saddle Ridge Road in Sylmar and quickly spread due to wind-blown embers that jumped the Golden State (5) Freeway about 11:20 p.m., spreading the flames into Granada Hills and Porter Ranch, according to Margaret Stewart of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Fire authorities ask residents to text "Ready" to 888-777 for the most updated evacuation information. 

For a full list of evacuation centers click here: https://knx1070.radio.com/articles/fire-info-school-closures-evac-centers-freeways-impacted

For a full list of school closures click here: https://knx1070.radio.com/articles/fire-info-school-closures-evac-centers-freeways-impacted

For an updated list on traffic and freeway closures click here: https://knx1070.radio.com/articles/fire-info-school-closures-evac-centers-freeways-impacted

The fire is still burning out of control with houses burned, and residents forced out. Several freeways and were schools are closed. 

Cal Fire spokeswoman Cathey Mattingly says a person was killed in a fire that swept through a mobile home park Thursday in Riverside County east of Los Angeles. Mattingly says there were also some injuries but she does not know the number or severity.

Seventy-four structures were destroyed.

In Los Angeles, a man went into cardiac arrest and died at the scene of a raging wildfire that broke out late Thursday.

Governor Gavin Newsom today announced that the state has secured a Fire Management Assistance Grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help ensure the availability of resources to fight the Saddleridge Fire burning in Los Angeles and Ventura counties.

The fire is burning along the northern tier of the city and has damaged at least 25 homes and 23,000 residences. 

The fire broke out around 9 p.m. Thursday. 

One man lost his life trying to protect his home. Authorities say he died of cardiac arrest. 

Schools and colleges in the area are closed and key freeways are shut down.

Water dropping helicopters that worked through the night have been bolstered by firefighting airplanes since daybreak.