Brush fire in Agua Dulce spreads to more than 600 acres

A DC-10 tanker drops fire retardant on a brush fire near Rowher Flats Off-Highway Vehicle Area in Agua Dulce on Wednesday, July 01, 2020. Dan Watson/The Signal
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By Caleb Lunetta and Tammy Murga

Firefighters worked to extinguish a fast-spreading fire that grew to 616 acres by 6:45 p.m. in Agua Dulce on Wednesday. 

The brush fire was reported at 2:41 p.m. on the 11110 block of West Mint Canyon Road in Agua Dulce.

Units on the scene first reported a 4- to 5-acre blaze, according to Franklin Lopez, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Fire Department. However, by 3:30 p.m. the fire had reached 150-200 acres, according to Marvin Lim, also of the Fire Department.

Firefighters staging before going to contain the #RowherFire. Dan Watson / The Signal.

The fire continued to spread at a moderate rate of speed with gusty wind conditions but additional crews were sent to the scene in an effort to control the situation, according to John Clearwater, spokesman for the Angeles National Forest. 

“The good thing is that (firefighters) have a lot of assets out there, with air tankers, helicopters and additional engines,” he said. 

As of 5 p.m. no structures were threatened as the fire appeared to have moved out into dead, open space, said Clearwater, adding that should the direction of the fire shift, structures could be threatened “but so far, so good.” 

With a clear view of the fire’s plume of smoke in the far distance, officials at The Gentle Barn said they were monitoring the fire. 

“So far we are unaffected by #rowherfire. But we are keeping an eye on it, we’ve hooked up our rescue trailers, and we’re ready to evacuate ourselves or other people,” Ellie Laks, founder of The Gentle Barn, said in a tweet. 

A fast-spreading fire breaks out in Agua Dulce on Wednesday, July 1, 2020. Dan Watson/ The Signal

“It looks like they’ve got it under control,” Clearwater said at 7:30 p.m. “No structures are threatened at this time, and we’ll have personnel monitoring the fire through the night, with the winds or if there is a change in directions.”

The fire, due to its proximity to the Rowher Flats Off-Highway Motor Vehicle trail, has been given the moniker of #RowherIC. 
The fire was being handled by Angeles National Forest fire teams, with Los Angeles County Fire Department assisting.

On Wednesday, officials said in a tweet that fire danger levels in the area was raised to “very high” and reminded the public that “all fireworks are prohibited. Fire patrols will strictly enforce the ‘no fireworks’ policy. A violation can result in a $5,00 fine and six months in jail.”

Signal Staff Writer Emily Alvarenga contributed to this report.

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