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Crews Making Gains on Forest Fire

Blaze: Flames burning near Lake Arrowhead may take days to quell. Area roads still open.


A large wildfire in the San Bernardino National Forest continued to burn late Saturday, but firefighters made significant headway in surrounding the blaze, authorities said.

As of 8:30 p.m., the Lake Arrowhead-area fire was 40% contained, said Carol Beckley, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Forest Service. "It's pretty stable right now," she said, adding that it would probably not be fully controlled until Friday.

The blaze, just a mile from California 18, has charred about 2,500 acres. It began about noon Friday near Waterman Canyon, a short distance from Arrowhead Springs Resort and Conference Center, fire officials said.

More than 1,100 firefighters are battling the blaze. No evacuations or serious injuries have been reported.

Two firefighters have suffered minor injuries battling the wildfire, Beckley said. Highways leading to and from the Lake Arrowhead area have remained open.

The blaze might have been caused by a firefighting training exercise that was held Friday, said Bill Peters, a spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection in San Bernardino County, which had been conducting the training.

Flames damaged the west side of the Arrowhead Springs Resort, a 1930s-era hotel that is now used by a Christian ministry. Five small buildings on the property--four maintenance sheds and a bath house--were destroyed, officials said.

The buildings were near the area where the forestry department was conducting a controlled burn training exercise.

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