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Crews make progress fighting Gopher Fire

Posted at 6:53 AM, Aug 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-09 20:33:46-04

DEER SPRINGS, Calif. - A pair of brush fires that blackened nearly three dozen open acres alongside Interstate 15 near Castle Creek Country Club were still smoldering Tuesday, but no structures were threatened.

The blazes erupted roughly a half-mile apart on the west side of the freeway in the Deer Springs area for unknown reasons about 3 p.m. Monday, according to Cal Fire, which updated the containment figure to 40 percent Tuesday afternoon.

Authorities shut down the southbound lanes of the interstate and directed the occupants of two nearby houses to evacuate as a precaution while ground crews and personnel aboard air tankers and water-dropping helicopters worked to subdue the flames.

The blazes, which moved to within about a quarter-mile of each other while scorching an estimated 35 combined acres, caused no reported structural damage or injuries, Cal Fire Capt. Issac Sanchez said.

The cause of the fires remained under investigation.