Update, May 12:6 PM: Fire officials say 20 homes were destroyed and 11 damaged by the coastal fire, which is now an estimated 15%. There are still 200 acres incinerated, a total that has not increased since the initial reports.
Two firefighters are reported to have been injured, but there were no details about their condition beyond their expected recovery.
The orders to evacuate about 900 houses will be extended till Friday. Firefighters are still scouring the areas and extinguishing fire embers they may have missed in the rubble hot spots.
eastNearby wealthy communities Laguna NigueliCalifornia is at risk of a fire tonight, as high winds lashed brush fires that blazed more than 200 acres early in the evening.
More than a dozen ocean-view homes were burning in Laguna Niguel, and nearby communities are preparing evacuation orders as the so-called “coastal fire” escalates.
Laguna Niguel is one of the most expensive cities in Orange County, located just south of Los Angeles County. It claims a median household income of $108,537 as of 2019. Typical home prices are $1,294,837 per zilo, but many homes near the beach can be much more expensive.
The fire broke out near a water treatment plant between Laguna Niguel and Laguna Beach on Wednesday afternoon, according to the Orange County Fire Authority. Around 5 pm, the first was on 30 acres, but an hour later it exceeded 200 acres. Hot embers entering the attic pose a particular problem for firefighters.
A mandatory evacuation order has been issued for Coronado Point Drive, Vista Court and Via Las Rojas in the city of Laguna Niguel. Representatives from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department went door to door, helping to evacuate people.
He estimates that there are about 100 structures in those areas. A voluntary evacuation warning has been issued for the Balboa Nyes (Portafina) neighborhood.
There were no immediate reports of injuries.
Several water-dropping helicopters are helping to fight the flames, and crews in fixed-wing aircraft are also assisting.
Since then an evacuation center has been set up for those seeking help. Area residents can visit the Crown Valley Community Center at 29751 Crown Valley Parkway for assistance. The Orange County Emergency Operations Center has also created a public information hotline to answer questions from residents. You can reach them at 714-628-7085.