Strong winds whip up spot fire inside Tick Fire zone

Some of the fire crews dispatched to the Soledad brush fire. Signal photo, Bobby Block
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Fire flared up mid-afternoon Wednesday in an area all too familiar to firefighters this week on Soledad Canyon Road, consuming 30 acres in about 15 minutes.

At 3:40 p.m. flames were spotted off the south side of the northbound lanes of Highway 14 near Soledad.

Firefighters with the Los Angeles County Fire Department, dispatched to the call, described the fire as having burned 1 acre when they arrived at the scene at 3:47 p.m., Fire Department spokesman Franklin Lopez said.

Firefighters dispatched to the call were not pulled away from the strike teams monitoring the Tick Fire, he said.

Dealing with the strong winds forecast by weather officials who posted an extreme red flag warning because of them, initial firefighters on the scene saw the fire move swiftly through moderate fuel.

In five minutes, the fire had burned 2 acres.

Linking it to the Tick Fire, extra resources were immediately assigned to the Soledad Incident.

Fire crews with more than a dozen fire battalions were pressed into action, supported by fire-dumping helicopters and fixed-wing water-dumping SuperScoopers.

About 4 p.m.,just 15 minutes after it flared up, the fire had swelled quickly to burn more than 30 acres, Lopez said.

“They said all forward progress had been stopped and the fire was contained,” he said.

Several of the fire crews dispatched to the call were kept in place there as a precaution.

As soon as the fire was reported, California Highway Patrol officers reduced northbound traffic on Highway 14 to two lanes between Escondido Canyon Road and Soledad Canyon Road.

Soledad Canyon Road remains open, CHP Office Josh Greengard said, noting Sand Canyon Road is closed.

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On Twitter: @jamesarthurholt

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