By Mary O’KEEFE
As of Wednesday at 5:30 p.m., the Wiliams Fire had burned 4,180 acres and was 48% contained. There were eight air tankers, 10 water dropping helicopters, two water tender trucks, eight bulldozers, 40 engines and 34 hand crews equaling to 1,131 personnel battling the blaze.
The fire began about 2 p.m. Sunday in the San Gabriel Canyon area of the Angeles National Forest. There had been some structures threatened, however as of Wednesday the fire’s southern portion had been held and structures were no longer threatened.
Highway 39 has been closed since the fire began. There were evacuations throughout the area including camp sites. Those who had been evacuated will be allowed to systematically return.
“Permanent residents will be allowed to go back [today] beginning at 9 a.m. They will be escorted by law enforcement and must have a photo [identification] with them,” said Nathan Judy, ANF spokesman.
Those who have vacation homes will be allowed in at a later date. There were some campers who had to be evacuated. They will be allowed in on Saturday.
“Most recreational users that were evacuated got all their camping equipment, but some did leave stuff behind,” Judy said.
Those recreational users are asked to meet at 9 a.m. at 100 North Old San Gabriel Canyon Road, Azusa. They too must have photo identification with them.
“We will have them escorted into the canyon and [they] will have an hour to collect their belongings,” Judy said.
Full containment is expected on Sept. 13.