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Firefighters Gain Ground On Rye Fire In Santa Clarita

SANTA CLARITA (CBSLA) — Firefighters made progress Wednesday against the Rye Fire, which has burned 7,000 acres in Santa Clarita.

Authorities say the wildfire is 5 percent contained after it prompted evacuations of about 5,000 people from 1,300 homes, and forced closures on sections of the Golden State (5) Freeway and State Route 126. All roads have since been reopened.

The Simi Valley Police Department reported Wednesday morning that the fire's threat to Simi Valley had been reduced.

Gusty winds kept firefighting aircraft grounded and may have also been the cause of a power outage that interrupted service to about 2,090 customers in the Santa Clarita area.

The wind-fueled brush fire broke out at about 9:30 a.m. Tuesday on Rye Canyon Loop, near Highway 126, also known as Newhall Ranch Road, according to the fire department.

Homes along Rye Canyon Loop, the Westridge housing community, and the Valencia Travel Village RV park were ordered to evacuate. The mandatory order was lifted for Westridge residents at about 6 p.m. Tuesday, and then again for Valencia Travel Village on Wednesday morning. The Los Angeles County Fire Department reported that officials were evaluating whether to lift the remaining evacuation orders.

Evacuation centers were established at Valencia High School at 27801 Dickason Drive and College of the Canyons, 6455 Rockwell Canyon Road.

The 5 Freeway was temporarily closed in both directions near state Route 126, but the freeway – a main artery for the state of California – was reopened by mid-afternoon. Rye Canyon Loop was also closed, along with state Route 126 from Copperhill Drive to the 5 Freeway.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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