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Fast-Moving Calif. Wildfire 90% Contained

A Northern California wildfire was 90 percent contained Saturday after forcing thousands to evacuate, destroying several homes and closing a six-mile stretch of scenic Highway 1, fire officials said.

The fire near Watsonville could be fully contained by the end of the day, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection officials said. It had charred 630 acres.

"We made some good progress over the evening and hope to have the same today," said Cal Fire spokesman Battalion Chief Paul Van Gerwen.

However, evacuation orders remained in place Saturday for the roughly 2,000 people evacuated from their homes Friday. Some evacuees spent the night at an emergency shelter set up at a local school.

About 650 firefighters were working in hot, dry weather to contain the blaze, which destroyed as many as 15 buildings, including several homes, and closed Highway 1 in Santa Cruz County for hours, fire officials said.

The cause of the fire was still under investigation, Van Gerwen said.