California firefighters battle 11 blazes; Post Fire burns 15,610 acres

By Darryl Coote & Allen Cone
A plane drops retardant ahead of the Point Fire, west of Geyserville, Calif., on Sunday. Photo by Peter DaSilva/UPI
1 of 8 | A plane drops retardant ahead of the Point Fire, west of Geyserville, Calif., on Sunday. Photo by Peter DaSilva/UPI | License Photo

June 17 (UPI) -- Firefighters on Monday were battling about a dozen blazes throughout California, including a fast-moving wildfire that has forced evacuations north of Los Angeles.

The Post Fire in Gorman ignited shortly before 2 p.m. local time Saturday and has since burned more than 15,610 acres with about 8% containment, according to an update Monday from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, which is better known as Cal Fire.


A total of 1,148 personnel, 114 engines, seven helicopters and 14 water tenders have been deployed to fight the blaze as it spreads southeast toward Lake Pyramid, which has been closed due to the threat, while some 1,200 people have been evacuated from Hungry Valley Park by the California State Park Services.

The evacuation order is for areas south of Pyramid Lake between Old Ridge Route and the Los Angeles County line.


"Aircraft are being utilized to halt the fire's forward progress but are facing challenges due to limited visibility," Cal Fire said. "Firefighters will continue working overnight to reinforce the existing perimeter on the fire's east side, as the wind is expected to push the fire further south towards Pyramid Lake."

Cali Fire noted high temperatures and lower humidity are forecasted for Tuesday, with winds expected to peak in the afternoon. Wind gusts may reach up to 20 mph, with stronger winds at the ridge tops potentially reaching 50 mph.

One structure was destroyed and one person was injured, according to Cal Fire.

The Los Angeles County Fire Department said the Post Fire also threatened 10 commercial buildings and 50 single-family residences.

Numerous firefighting air tankers from throughout the state are flying fire suppression missions.

Cooperating agency partners include the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, L.A. County Office of Emergency Management, California State Park and California Highway Patrol.

"The fire is continuing to burn in a southerly direction towards the community of Castaic, making smoke visible to Ventura County residents but is not currently threatening any residential communities in Ventura County," the agency said in a statement on its emergency website.


An air quality alert has been issued for Monday by the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District. It is in the "unhealthy range for everyone," it said.

Another 10 fires also were burning Monday afternoon, the majority in Southern California.

The second largest blaze at a little more than 1,131 acres was the Hesperia Fire in San Bernardino County. It also started Friday, though just before 7 p.m.

And like the Post Fire, its cause was under investigation.

It was 30% contained.

Evacuations have been called for Arrowhead Equestrian Estates. The San Bernardino County Sheriff's office said large animals can be taken to the Mojave River Junction or the county's fairgrounds.

Smoke will be visible for miles, the Cal Fire San Bernardino Unit Public Information Office said on X.

The Junes Fire in Butte County is 1,076 acres and 95% contained, and the Point Fire in Sonoma County is 1,019 acres was 20% contained.


As of June 10, there have been 1,769 wildfires scorching 41,926. The five-year average is 2,295 fires and 27,101 acres during the same interval.

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