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Evacuations Continue as Hundreds Battle 2 Wildfires Outside Gilroy, Morgan Hill

GILROY (CBS SF) -- As firefighters gained control of the Park Fire in the area of Anderson Lake near Morgan Hill, a second fire flared to life near Crews Road outside Gilroy Sunday afternoon.

The Crews Fire east of Gilroy in rural Santa Clara County quickly grew to 1,000 acres in the hilly, tinder-dry region and additional evacuations of properties along Cañada Road were underway as of 6:30 p.m. Sunday.

The fire was first reported at about 2:45 p.m. Sunday along Crews Road east of Gilroy. It has spread east across Canada Road and has prompted evacuations in that area, most notably along Cañada Road, Cal Fire said. Two buildings have been destroyed and many others are threatened.

Additional air and ground equipment worked the blaze until sundown. Fire crews from Oakland, Fremont and Alameda County have all sent crews to battle the blaze.


The Park Fire near Morgan Hill has burned about 350 acres and is 50 percent contained but the fire's advance has been halted, according to the Morgan Hill police department.

The fire started about 11 p.m. Saturday and for a time threatened 25 homes. Several outbuildings were damaged but forward progress was stopped about 10:30 a.m. Saturday.

Eighty people were evacuated from their homes, but allowed to return on Siunda night.

"Over the next 12 hours the fire is expected to have limited growth but there will be significant mop up due to the steep and inaccessible terrain," Morgan Hill police said.

There are currently 38 engines, eight hand crews, four bulldozers and 237 firefighters at the scene, as well as assisting personnel from the Santa Clara County Parks Department, Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department and the California Highway Patrol.

Smoke from the fire has prompted the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to issue an air quality advisory through Monday for the far South Bay, including Morgan Hill, San Martin and Gilroy.

"Onshore winds are expected to be light and are expected to become stronger throughout the day," the air district said in an announcement, with satellite images showing smoke spreading southeast of the Santa Clara Valley region. "Currently, impacts include smoky skies, smell of smoke and localized elevated particle pollution."

Residents who smell smoke are advised to limit outside exposure and keep doors and windows closed if possible. Air conditioning units and car vent systems should be set to re-circulate to prevent outside air from moving inside.

Evacuations ordered earlier for the area around the fire remain in place, officials said.

Real-time air quality readings are available online at

© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News contributed to this report

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