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Eastern California wildfire stopped, evacuations lifted

California Wildfire
Posted at 11:21 AM, Feb 18, 2022

BIG PINE, Calif. (AP) — A wildfire in eastern California’s Owens Valley is 30% contained after firefighters stopped its forward progress and evacuation orders were lifted.

Cal Fire said early Friday that firefighters made good progress despite temperatures that fell below freezing overnight.

The fire scorched more than 6 square miles after erupting Wednesday near Eastern Sierra Regional Airport outside the town of Bishop.

Winds drove the flames south toward the town of Big Pine, where evacuations were ordered.

California Wildfire
This photo provided by CAL FIRE San Bernardino Unit Public Information Office shows a wildfire near in Owens Valley, Calif. on Thursday, Feb. 17, 2022. A wildfire continued to burn actively in eastern California's remote Owens Valley but firefighters had so far kept it from harming small communities, authorities said. (CAL FIRE San Bernardino Unit Public Information Office via AP)

The fire also threatened the California Institute of Technology’s Owens Valley Radio Observatory and the University of California’s White Mountain Research Center.