Leadership, Photos

California Firefighters Contend with Ventura County Wildfire

A fire apparatus parked on a highway in Ventura County, California, as a wildland fire rages in the background.

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Firefighters contained a wildfire that prompted evacuations and closed a major roadway last week in Southern California. Fire photographer Rick McClure shared some stunning visuals from the fire scenes.

According to details forwarded by McClure, the fire at Solimar Beach in Ventura County spread rapidly because of wind conditions. Hundreds of firefighters worked to control the wildland fire, which burned more that 1,200 acres, and the 101 Freeway was shut down for hours in both directions.

Two firefighters suffered minor injuries.

All the photos McClure shared are from a stretch of the 101 (Ventura) Freeway just north of the city of Ventura. The fire started around 10:50 p.m. Christmas night from a downed power line on private property in the oil fields. No homes immediately threatened, but structure protection was provided in Solimar, a small beach community with a few homes along the Pacific Ocean.

In a couple of photos is the Mission Bell which is significant in California for they marked the trail (El Camino Real) for the Franciscans led by Father Junipero Serra in 1769, establishing our Missions in California. Agencies from around southern California–both from land and air–aided Ventura County in the firefight, McClure wrote.

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