Fire in Riverside County grows to nearly 2,000 acres

LA CRESTA, Calif. -- A brush fire that started spreading rapidly in Riverside County Wednesday evening grew to an estimated 1,974 acres by 5:30 p.m. Thursday and was about 10% contained.

The wildfire, dubbed the Tenaja Fire, started just before 4 p.m. in the La Cresta community near Murrieta. By about 9 p.m. Wednesday, it had already grown to just under 1,000 acres.

The next morning, flames had spread about another 400 acres and continued to burn throughout the day.

Cal Fire San Diego was among the local agencies helping crews in Riverside County.

Officials issued an evacuation order for the Santa Rosa Plateau Visitor Center at 39400 Clinton Keith Road in Murrieta, for all homes along The Trails Circle in La Cresta and for residents in Copper Canyon South of Calle del Oso Oro between Clinton Keith and Murrieta Creek at Calle del Oso Oro.

On Thursday afternoon, evacuation orders were issued in Murrieta for Montanya Place, Botanica Place, Belcara Place and Lone Oak Way. "People on these streets MUST GO NOW because it is the safest time to leave," officials said of the evacuation orders in a news release.

The Romoland School District and the Murrieta Valley Unified School District both announced Thursday that all district schools would be closed on Friday due to the poor air quality resulting from the fire.

Cal Fire Riverside said a care center was open to evacuated residents and their small pets at Murietta Mesa High School.

Check back for updates on this developing story.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.