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Saddle Ridge Fire 80 Percent Contained, Red Flag Warnings Issued

PORTER RANCH (CBSLA) — Crews working under a red flag warning continued to fight the Saddle Ridge fire in Sylmar as low humidity and gusty winds returned.

The nearly 8,800-acre fire exploded Thursday, Oct. 10 fueled by powerful Santa Ana winds.

As of Sunday morning, the fire was 80 percent contained and had destroyed 19 structures and damaged 88 more.

"Weather conditions over the next 48 hours will test current containment and open lines," the Los Angeles Fire Department said in a statement Friday night.

"Firefighters continue to negotiate rugged terrain to increase containment lines and address hot spots," the statement said.

Crews worked to contain hot spots as authorities warned that windy conditions could potentially kick up smoldering embers and ignite new blazes in and around the fire zone.

The strongest winds were expected Saturday evening, with weak Santa Ana winds anticipated from Sunday night through Tuesday.

A red flag warning was issued for the L.A., Ventura, and Santa Barabara County mountains, Santa Clarita Valley, and the San Fernando Valley from 6 p.m. Saturday until 10 p.m. Sunday due to moderate to strong winds and low humidity.

Southern California Edison customers were at risk, yet again, of losing power due to "Public Safety Power Shutoffs," that would turn off transmission lines in danger of being damaged by high winds.

As of Friday evening, about 11,500 SCE customers in parts of Santa Clarita, Canyon Country, Chatsworth, Little Rock, Acton, Castaic, and Sun Village were under consideration for power shutoffs.

The cause of the Saddle Ridge fire remained undetermined Saturday morning, but the point of origin was identified by Los Angeles Fire Department arson investigators as a 50-foot-by-70-foot area beneath a Southern California Edison high-voltage transmission tower.

(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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