Officials on Thursday asked visitors to avoid heading up to the Big Bear Valley after the El Dorado Fire prompted expanded evacuations and the closure of a local highway.
“Due to fire activity, fire and law enforcement officials are asking the public to avoid visiting the mountain communities of Big Bear for the next several days,” the Big Bear Sheriff’s Station wrote in a Facebook post.
The Big Bear and San Bernardino County fire departments, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department and Cal Fire issued the advisory in response to a new evacuation order and the closure of Highway 38 between Angelus Oaks and Onyx Summit.
Big Bear Lake, Big Bear City, Moonridge, Sugarloaf, Lake Williams, Baldwin Lake, Fawnskin are among the communities affected by the advisory.
Officials said they are looking to increase awareness regarding the wildfire’s potential threat to the Big Bear Valley, and to minimize the population in the event that evacuations should become necessary there.
“The advisory is not an evacuation warning, however residents should be prepared in case a warning or order is announced,” a sheriff’s news release stated.
The El Dorado Fire, which was sparked by a gender reveal party in Yucaipa last Saturday, has scorched more than 13,500 acres and was 31% percent contained as of Thursday.
Residents in the red portion must evacuate immediately. Areas in the yellow are under evacuation warnings. Click here if you can’t view this map.
Residents can also sign up for to have emergency notifications sent to to their homes through the county’s Telephone Emergency Notification System.