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The Hornet

Serving the Fullerton Community Since 1922

The Hornet

Risner Fire threatens homes in La Habra

An 80-acre blaze engulfed the hills of Fullerton and La Habra today, prompting some evacuations.

Los Angeles County helicopter drops water pay load on a brush fire in La Habra, CA on Tuesday September 8, 2015. Photo credit: Patrick Quirk

The fire has been contained as of 6:45 p.m., according to the Fullerton Police Department.

Firefighters from several counties responded to a 911 call of a wildfire around 3:40 p.m., said Julie Kunze, Fullerton Fire Department Public Information Officer.

The brushfire, now being called the Risner Fire, originated from South Idaho Street and West Risner Way, according to the Fullerton Fire Department.

Fire units from Fullerton, Anaheim, Brea, Orange County, City of Orange and Los Angeles County Fire Departments responded to the blaze and were able to control the flames within two hours.

Road block.jpg
Los Angeles County Fire Department monitors the fire to prevent its spread in La Habra, CA on Tuesday September 8, 2015. Photo credit: Stephanie Lara

“We responded with a full response, and we quickly elevated that to 35 units,” Kunze said. “We have three helicopters and two fixed wings assisting us.”

Super-scoopers and water-dropping helicopters assisted in the fight.

Helicopters could be seen scooping up water at the Westridge Golf Club in La Habra.

The effected area expands through two counties and touches several different cities. According to Kunze, there was already a plan set in place in case a fire did break out in the area.

A lonely road
Fire fighters make their way into the Risner Fire on Tuesday, September 8, 2015. Photo credit: Patrick Quirk

“It’s an automatic aide,” Kunze said, “We have many resources that will respond to this area because this area does touch so many different organizations.”

No mandatory evacuations were ordered. Voluntary evacuations, however, were encouraged by the La Habra Police Department.

Residents who chose to evacuate were housed at the La Habra and Fullerton Community Centers. American Red Cross members were present to provide aid to those who needed it.

Many local residents were pleased with the quick response from local fire departments. Most hadn’t even noticed the flames until they heard sirens from responding agencies.

“I heard all the noise, and I look out my windows to see all the fire trucks race by,” local resident Carol Telloeken said. “Then I turn around and ‘Whoa! Look at all the black smoke!'”

Carol Jean Telleoken.jpg
Carol Jean Telleoken, who lives in a nearby home felt confident with the Los Angeles County firefighters' ability to contain the situation. Photo credit: Stephanie Lara

Telloeken, who lives in the neighborhood, was unfazed by the flames and chose to stay in her home with her husband.

Farid Nasser, 21, who lives five minutes away from a part of the blaze, also chose not to evacuate. He felt confident in the response.

“They’ve got a lot of support,” Nasser said.

Evacuations were lifted around 8 p.m. and about 40 residents were allowed to return to their homes.

The cause of the fire is still unknown and is under investigation.

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