More than 1,000 firefighters battling Loma Fire in Santa Cruz Mountains

WATSONVILLE, Calif. (KGO) -- Cooler, but stronger winds could work for or against firefighters battling the Loma Fire. The flames are centered on Loma Prieta, the tallest peak in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Evacuations were lifted Wednesday afternoon for all Santa Cruz County residents, but road closures remain in effect for non-residents.

Firefighters have sent in reinforcements for the fire.

"We were at 500 on Monday, yesterday we were at 800, today we're over 1,000. It doesn't matter what patch is on the side of a person's fire engine or a uniform. It's a single fire service and it's a single mission to fight this fire," said CAL FIRE Battalion Chief Jonathan Cox.

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Overnight, crews were able to keep the fire from growing. It stayed at 2,250 acres. However, containment numbers also stalled at 10 percent. The official count for destroyed or damaged homes remains at two, with an additional six out-buildings destroyed. CAL FIRE says that number could go up.

"Obviously right now right now our priority is the life and the property and to stop this fire. Then we'll go back and count those," said Cox.

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"So there's a possibility that there are homes that are destroyed that you haven't gone through and looked at?" asked ABC7's Matt Keller.

"Yes, there's a possibility that number will increase," said Cox.

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Several sheriff's deputies were on standby overnight, they weren't needed for new evacuations, because there were none. However, Red Cross was needed at the Morgan Hill Presbyterian Church.

Thirteen evacuees and one service dog were given a place to sleep for the night.

"I came down to this place and I looked around and this is perfect for getting out and for having a place to go to. I slept like a brick last night," said Tom Seitzler, evacuee.

Firefighters are working 24 hour shifts, and they are hoping to have the fire contained by Monday.

For evacuees who want to get their large animals out of harm's way, two centers have been set up to take them in. Horses can be taken to the Graham Hill Showgrounds in Santa Cruz or the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in Watsonville.

If you have other animals, please call ahead to see if they can take them.

Evacuations have been lifted for Santa Cruz County residents.

Road closures:
Rancho Prieta Road
Loma Prieta Way
Pacific Rim

Mt. Bachi Road
Summit Road
Haven Hill Lane
Ormsby Cutoff/Trail

Click here for full coverage on the Loma Fire.

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