Forward Progress Stopped on 7-Acre Brush Fire Burning in Malibu Area

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Forward progress has been stopped on a small brush fire that scorched about seven acres on a hillside near Malibu Friday afternoon, Los Angeles County fire officials said.

Fire crews battled a blaze that erupted near Malibu on May 19, 2017. (Credit: KTLA)

The blaze erupted near Mulholland Highway and Kanan Dume Road -- an unincorporated area of the Santa Monica Mountains -- shortly before 1 p.m., according to the L.A. County Fire Department Inspector Richard Licon. The location is not far from Rocky Oaks Park.

Licon added that dispatchers received several calls from drivers reporting a fire along the highway.

By 1:05 p.m., the Fire Department estimated that it had charred about 2 acres. About 30 minutes later, the fire was around 7 acres.

Around 6:30 p.m., officials said the blaze was 75 percent contained.

It was burning through heavy brush on a hillside, aerial video from Sky5 showed. Crews were battling the flames by ground and air as they spread up the mountainous terrain.

Crews were gaining the upper hand on a small brush fire that burned in the Malibu area on May 19, 2017. (Credit: KTLA)

Firefighters appeared to gain a handle on the blaze early on, with columns of white smoke wafting high above the hillside. However, several hot spots later flared up, and -- fueled by the brush -- the fire appeared to grow quickly for a time, Sky 5 video showed.

Crews created a small break at the top of the ridge in effort to stop the blaze's forward progress, according to Licon. Two water-dropping helicopters are also being utilized in the firefight.

“We want to get a good handle on this as quickly as we can. The heat is – it’s pretty warm out there right now," Licon told KTLA. “We want to make sure we get a good jump on it, before the winds kick up.”

The Friday afternoon forecast in the area called for sunny skies with a high near 76 degrees, with east to northeast winds of around 5 mph.

Fire officials have not said whether any structures were threatened, though several appeared to be not far from the area, according to the aerial footage.

No evacuations have been ordered, Licon said.

It was not immediately known what sparked the blaze.

KTLA's Jennifer Thang and Melissa Pamer contributed to this story. 

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