Loma Fire spreads to at least 1,000 acres in Santa Cruz Mountains

SANTA CRUZ MOUNTAINS, Calif. (KGO) -- Crews are battling a fast-moving brush fire on top of Loma Prieta in the Santa Cruz Mountains that is threatening homes and has grown to least 1,000 acres. So far, the fire is five percent contained.

Cal Fire Assistant Chief Michael Borelli says the fire broke out at 2:45 p.m. in the area of Loma Prieta and Loma Chiquita roads off of Summit Road. The area is north of the border between Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties, where a large plume of smoke could be seen for miles.

PHOTOS: Crews battle brush fire in Santa Cruz Mountains

According to Matt Streck with Cal Fire, it began as a structure fire and has destroyed one other structure. He adds that given the location, on top of a mountain ridge, the winds may push in the fire in many directions, which adds to the rapid growth of the fire. The drought conditions are also another factor in the fueling the flames.

Cal Fire has not said how many homes have been damaged by the fire at this time.

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There are no reports of injuries at this time, but Borelli says evacuation orders have been issued for people in about 300 structures near the fire on Casa Loma Road, Loma Chiquita Road, and Loma Prieta Road.

Below are the three evacuation centers that have been set up for anyone affected by the fire.
- Soquel High School located at 401 Old San Jose Road in Soquel
- Jewish Community Center of Silicon Valley located at 14855 Oka Road in Los Gatos
- Morgan Hill Presbyterian Church located at 16970 Dewitt Avenue in Morgan Hill

CHP is doing road closures Mt. Bache at Loma Preita Road, Mt. Bache at Highland and Mt. Maddona Road at Pole Line Road. Furthermore, there are voluntary evacuations issued for the KSBW Tower on the summit.

Cal Fire crews north to Redding and all the way south to San Luis Obispo are working to extinguish the fire. There are also crews battling the fire from Santa Cruz and Santa Clara County. "The vegetation is very dry, susceptible to fast-moving fire and explosive fire. As this fire started and started moving throughout the canyon, it moved very fast up steep terrain into rough terrain," San Jose Fire Department Capt. Christopher Salcido said.

The fire appears to be within the vicinity of buildings for radio stations KBAY-FM and KKUP-FM.

Click here for full coverage on the Loma Fire.

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