Moderate Brush Fire Burns on Vacant Lot Above Leucadia

First Helicopter Water Drop at 8:00 p.m.

The Fire Department started responding to calls of a fire around 7:00 p.m.

A small fire started on the forward promontory of a privately owned vacant lot, not part of the Habitat Authority open space, overlooking Leucadia Dr. The area has been a popular "party spot" and easily accessible from Punta del Este Dr in Hacienda Heights, though the cause of the fire is not yet known.

The fire gradually increased in size burning northward and spreading east and west.

Engines were called in from Los Angeles County.

The first helicopter water drop occurred at about 8:00 p.m., another at 8:09, then 8:12.

At 8:19 two helicopters at a time started doing drops every 8 minutes until about 9:15 p.m..

The helicopters were able to fly in low over the northern city ridgeline. This method will shortly be made more difficult, as 20 story tall towers and Edison power lines are being staged now for installation later this year. In October 2009, then Mayor Vipperman refused to write a letter on behalf of the City opposing the proposed power lines.

20 Story Tall Towers
An impediment to low flying water-carrying helicopters?

The Heights Inn on Panchoy Pl was reported evacuated as a precaution though it was not threatened.

Three to four news copters were hovering causing residents across the city to wonder what was going on and where the incident was.

By about 9:15 p.m the fire was mostly out, with hot spots still being doused at 10:00 p.m., with expectation mop up would continue 2-3 hours with personnel on site overnight.

At 10:05 p.m. Dispatch reported over the radio, heard on the internet scanner, that the fire was about 3 acres, 70% contained, with one minor injury to an L.A. County firefighter's hand.

Reports of the fire size ranged from 3, to over 5 acres. Daylight will allow a more definite size.

Progression of Fire

7:39 p.m.
7:40 p.m.
7:45 p.m.
7:52 p.m.
7:54 p.m.
7:58 p.m.
8:13 p.m.

Video of Fire and first Water Drop - 2 minutes long

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