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Wildfire near LA spreads to more than 14,000 acres, sparking evacuations

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(LOS ANGELES) — A Southern California wildfire doubled in size overnight, causing the evacuation of more than 1,000 campers from a park, closing a popular recreation area on Father’s Day and threatening a major freeway in and out of Los Angeles, authorities said.

The Post Fire was burning out of control Sunday near Gorman, California, in the Tejon Pass area of Los Angeles County. The blaze started just before 2 p.m. PT on Saturday in the mountainous region and gusty winds caused flames to quickly spread to 5,000 acres, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire).

On Sunday afternoon, the fire had grown to 12,266 acres with 2% containment, according to Cal Fire, growing to over 14,000 acres Sunday night.

A group of hikers stranded in the fire zone had to be rescued Sunday morning, the Los Angeles County Fire Department told ABC News. It was not immediately clear how many of the hikers were injured, officials said.

At least two structures have been damaged by the fire, Cal Fire said.

Authorities issued evacuation orders Saturday as a wildfire in Los Angeles County, dubbed the Post Fire, spread over thousands of acres close to a major highway and threatened nearby structures, officials said. https://t.co/QhTLmLUBdk pic.twitter.com/ftiI26VpmP

— ABC News (@ABC) June 16, 2024

The cause of the fire remained under investigation Sunday.

More than 300 firefighters, including air tanker crews, are battling the fire from the ground and sky, authorities said.

About 1,200 campers at the Hungry Valley Park State Vehicular Recreation Area were ordered to evacuate Saturday night, and authorities closed Pyramid Lake, which was expecting thousands of visitors for Father’s Day, due to the threat of the Post Fire, Cal Fire said.

The fire was burning parallel to Interstate 5, a major artery in and out of Los Angeles. The freeway was briefly closed on Saturday, triggering a traffic jam through the area, officials said.

Meanwhile, a second Southern California wildfire was burning near Hesperia in San Bernardino County. The blaze started about 6:49 p.m. PT on Saturday and had burned 1,131 acres by Sunday afternoon, according to Cal Fire.

The wind-driven fire was pushing east Sunday toward the Arrowhead Equestrian Estates in Hesperia, where residents were under an evacuation warning, according to Cal Fire.

The Hesperia Fire was 7% contained Sunday afternoon. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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