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UPDATE: Burning, Stolen Car May Have Sparked Newell Fire In Napa County; Driver Arrested

AMERICAN CANYON (CBS SF/KPIX) -- Authorities in Napa County on Monday night said a burning, stolen car may have sparked the fast-moving vegetation in American Canyon. Police have arrested the driver.

The so-called Newell Fire was burning just east of Newell Drive, north of American Canyon Road near two local schools.

The blaze was first reported around 6:30 p.m., and grew quickly to 150 acres. As of 10 p.m., Cal Fire said forward progress had been stopped and the fire was 50% contained. Firefighters were keeping a close eye on wind shifts throughout the night.

According to Napa County Sheriff Oscar Ortiz, a 26-year-old suspect is in custody. He was found in the hills with burns on his body, next to the burning car that had been driven off road.

"When officers responded to the fire and got on scene, they found a car on fire where a car doesn't belong, by a creek area," said Sheriff Ortiz.

He also confirms, the car was stolen out of Vallejo.

At about 8:35 p.m., Cal Fire confirmed that the forward progress of the fire had been stopped at approximately 150 acres. The evacuation warning was lifted.

Cal Fire is investigating the possibility the burning car started the blaze. Residents watched as the flames spread quickly on a hillside, just across the street from their homes.

"Kind of had everybody nervous," said area resident Rob Sloan. "We live down the street this is the family home here and we came to be with everybody until the evacuation order was called off."

The evacuation warning was issued around 7 p.m. for residents east of Broadway/Highway 29. American Canyon Road was shut down due to the fire, according to Napa County Sheriff's Office.

Smoke from the fire could be observed for miles. Residents as far as Berkeley and Oakland reported smelling the smoke.

People traveling in the area were advised to use caution. Contra Costa Fire and other Bay Area fire agencies provided mutual aid to keep the fire from getting out of control amid Red Flag Warning conditions.

Andrea Nakano contributed to this report.

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