Rye Fire Burning in Santa Clarita Threatens Nearby Simi Valley, Remains 5 Percent Contained

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A 5,000-acre brush fire in Santa Clarita remained at 5 percent containment Tuesday evening, prompting authorities to issue an advisory to residents of nearby Simi Valley.

The fire could reach the Simi Valley area due to heavy winds, the Simi Valley Police Department said in a statement.

"Residents on the northern side of the City should be aware of this possibility and be prepared to evacuate if necessary," the statement said.

The Rye Fire continued to rage out of control in the Santa Clarita area on Dec. 5, 2017. (Credit: KTLA)

The Rye Fire continued to rage out of control in the Santa Clarita area on Dec. 5, 2017. (Credit: KTLA)

As of 8 p.m. Tuesday, evacuations have not been mandated in Simi Valley.

Evacuations have been lifted for the Westridge area in Santa Clarita, city officials said in a Facebook post at  5:53 p.m. But mandatory evacuations for the Valencia Travel Village in Castaic remained in effect as of 6:44 p.m., according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

Affected residents can take shelter at Valencia High School on 27801 Dickason Drive and College of the Canyons at 6455 Rockwell Canyon Road, the Sheriff's Department said.

Schools in the Simi Valley Unified School District will be closed Wednesday, the  Simi Valley Police Department said.

There have been no reports of injuries to fire crews or residents, according to the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station.

The Rye Fire started at about 9:55 a.m. in the 25100 block of Rye Canyon Road, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

It was first reported at about 5 acres but quickly grew to 200 acres and the response was upgraded, the Los Angeles County Fire Department said.

The fire was at 1,000 acres about 1:15 p.m., but had exploded to 5,000 acres just two hours later.

The 5 Freeway was closed at the 126 Freeway as a safety precaution, but was reopened about 2 p.m.

Medium to light brush was burning and no structures were threatened. Intense winds appeared to cause the fire to jump and was burning near a power plant in the area, a concern for firefighters battling the flames.

Five schools in the area were without power, according to Santa Clarita city officials. Students at West Ranch High School, Rancho Pico Junior High and Oak Hills Elementary were bussed to College of the Canyons in Santa Clarita, according to the city. Parents were able to meet with their children there, officials said.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said that the 9-1-1 system was down at the Santa Clarita station because of a power outage. Calls were being rerouted.

The Rye Fire burns in the Santa Clarita area on Dec. 5, 2017. (Credit: KTLA)

The Rye Fire burns in the Santa Clarita area on Dec. 5, 2017. (Credit: KTLA)

Newhall Ranch Road was closed between the 126 and Rye Canyon Road, the city reported.

Rye Canyon Loop to Kelly Johnson Parkway was also closed.

The Rye Fire burns as the Creek Fire in Sylmar and Thomas Fire in Ventura County were wreaking havoc. Thousands of acres have been scorched and thousands of homes have been evacuated.

Los Angeles County Fire Capt. Scott Miller told KTLA that resources were a bit stretched for the Rye Fire, but officials were expecting more to come in. He added that the firefighters have a "really good" perimeter surrounding the fire and they hope to have a good handle on it.

Firefighters were able to put out portions of the blaze that got close to nearby Six Flags Magic Mountain and a power plant, officials said. Meanwhile, some of the residents at a mobile home park close by drove out to escape the flames.

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