A brush fire erupted hot, dry conditions near Lake Piru Wednesday, quickly blackening more than 400 acres, threatening two dozen buildings and forcing the evacuation of a nearby campground, authorities said.
The Lime Fire, named for nearby Lime Canyon, broke out shortly before 5 p.m. and was initially described as an 8- to 10-acre blaze burning rapidly and “spotting in front of itself,” the Ventura County Fire Department said via social media. Firefighters immediately declared a second alarm and called for reinforcements.
About 125 firefighters continued working the fire as it spread beyond 400 acres by 10 p.m., officials said. It was 30% contained. The potential for the fire was estimated at 1,000 acres.
Twenty-five structures were threatened by the flames and authorities ordered the evacuation of the Lake Piru Recreation area, along with the west side of Piru Canyon Road, from Lake Piru South to Orchard Street, Ventura County officials said in a written statement.
“This fire is burning in difficult to access terrain and is moving in an easterly direction toward Lake Piru,” the statement said.
Meanwhile, fire officials were getting the upper hand on a 275-acre Elizabeth Fire burning off Foothill Road, between the cities of Ventura and Santa Paula, in an unincorporated county area. It was 70% contained by 10 p.m.
No evacuations or road closures were in effect late Wednesday afternoon as firefighters were being redirected from the Elizabeth Fire to the Lime Fire.