GILROY, Calif. (AP) Fire crews struggled on Friday to maintain fire lines around a wildfire that chewed through centuries-old redwoods and pushed hundreds out of their homes in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
Gusty winds picked up in the afternoon after heavy morning fog had given much-needed relief to firefighters. By Friday evening, they had contained about 25 percent of the blaze.
The fire, which burned about 5 square miles, had destroyed 28 structures, including 17 homes, officials said. Another 500 were threatened.
Almost 2,000 residents remained under evacuation orders more than 450 of them mandatory while almost 2,700 firefighters and a swarm of tanker planes and helicopters continued dousing the area, said Dave Shew, a battalion chief with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
Shew said he expects the containment effort to continue through the weekend. "It's going to take a little time to build 9 miles of line with manual labor," Shew said.
No injuries have been reported from the fire, which was first reported Thursday morning in the mountain range that separates Santa Cruz and Santa Clara counties. The area, about 15 miles south of San Jose, is rural but dotted with homes.
The cause remained under investigation.