Firefighters continue to battle Lake Fire

A helicopter continues the aerial battle against the Lake Fire after dark Wednesday night. Cory Rubin/For The Signal

As residents in the area of the Lake Fire were escorted into the burned area by firefighters Sunday to salvage what they could, nearby firefighters continued to work toward full containment of the fire. 

Despite wind gusts up to 40 mph overnight, by Sunday morning, the Lake Fire had reached  52% containment, burning 31,089 acres, as an influx of tropical moisture and higher humidity allowed firefighters to utilize direct attack strategies.

The fire continues to threaten 1,329 structures, already having destroyed 12 structures and 21 outbuildings, damaging six and resulting in minor injuries for one firefighter. 

Due to the steep, rugged, inaccessible terrain, firefighters have resorted to using aerial firing operations, including a Heli-torch, to burn vegetation on the forest floor and widen already constructed containment lines.

The Castaic Lake Recreation Area, including the lower and upper lakes, are both closed to the public as the area is being used as a base camp for firefighters. 

Repopulation efforts have been ongoing for the northeast area of the Lake Hughes community since officials announced Friday people would be able to return to their homes, though residents can only access the area via Elizabeth Lake Road from the east, with no access from the west due to the current road closures. 

The Santa Clarita Valley, due to ground-level ozone and the smoke caused by fires throughout California, is once again under an air quality advisory. Residents, especially children and those with underlying conditions, are advised to remain indoors or limit outdoor activity.

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