AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 “We worry about wind and the hot spots,” Burbank Fire Marshall Dave Starr said. “That’s something we’ve got to deal with.” Evacuation orders were lifted for some 70 homes along Country Club Drive in Burbank. Authorities, who at the fire’s peak had 1,500 personnel fighting the blaze, were sending firefighters home Sunday. A helicopter with a heat-seeking device scoured Burbank’s rough, hilly terrain Sunday evening in search of hot spots. More than 800 firefighters were being kept on overnight, but authorities expected to start today with about 300 firefighters or fewer, Starr said. The cause of the fire, which burned 1,200 acres but no structures, is under investigation. It broke out at 4:23 p.m. Thursday and was named after the restaurant Castaway, near where it ignited. Firefighters raced against the clock Sunday to mop up hot spots leftover from wildfires on both sides of the San Fernando Valley, fearing a return of gusting Santa Ana winds early this week could rekindle recent firestorms. The Topanga Fire, which started at the western end of the San Fernando Valley on Wednesday, was more than 85 percent contained Sunday after burning some 24,000 acres and destroying three homes, fire officials said. Full containment is expected at 6 p.m. today. In Burbank, where firefighters had been reassigned after the Topanga Fire was subdued, the Castaways Fire was about 57 percent contained and officials hoped to have it fully contained by noon on Tuesday. The Santa Ana winds could pick up as early as this afternoon, Starr said. But authorities also expect that the weather could work in their favor if a marine layer rises into the hills. The National Weather Service forecasts Santa Anas up to 25 mph returning sometime Tuesday and lingering until Wednesday. Country Club Drive residents began to return to their homes along the winding canyon road Sunday morning when the evacuation order was lifted. Among those returning was Kathy Ryan and her six children. The family had just moved into their home and had not finished unpacking when flames drove them away. “You just roll with the punches,” Ryan said. Several residents never left, despite the mandatory evacuation order issued Saturday. Deborah Lamia Denaver, a make-up artist who lives on Country Club Drive, was watering down the vegetation around her home’s circular driveway, washing away the ash that blew down from the hillside. She was one of the residents who stayed put. “We watched the ridge as (the fire) slowly crept down,” Denaver said. “And we were ready, the cars were ready, pointed in the right direction.” Bill and Doris Vick have been at their home in the 900 block of Country Club Drive since 1959, and they also decided not to evacuate. One friend called from Mexico to check up on the Vicks, and another friend who had been out of touch for 20 years e-mailed them. “We’ve been through the floods and the fires,” said Bill Vick, 88, a retired school principal. The cause of the Topanga Fire, which ignited just north of Topanga Canyon Boulevard and Highway 118, is also under investigation. On Sunday, firefighters walked along the containment line and worked to extinguish hot spots 100 feet in from the line to create a buffer zone, said Capt. Kurt Schaefer of the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Even though the fires have died down, the Los Angeles County Health Department issued a health alert due to the continued presence of air pollutants from the fires. “Although visible smoke may not be apparent, air quality in some parts of the county is being adversely affected by wildfires,” said Jonathan Fielding, the county’s director of public health. Fielding said areas where residents should take special care were the San Fernando Valley, West San Gabriel Valley and the Santa Clarita Valley. The county recommended anyone in areas affected by the fires limit strenuous outdoor activities. On Saturday, a brush fire burned a half-acre on the border between Tarzana and Woodland Hills but quickly contained by more than 60 firefighters. Wire services contributed to this report. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Evacuation orders lifted