By Michael J. ARIVZU
Firefighters responded to a grass in Sunland late Sunday evening at Oro Vista Avenue and Big Tujunga Canyon Road, about a mile from the entrance to the Angeles National Forest.
The area burned was mostly dry brush consisting of chaparral and bamboo. No structures were threatened or damaged in the blaze, but several homes are located in nearby Riverwood Ranch about a mile from the incident.
The call was received at 10:29 p.m., according to Los Angeles Fire Dept. spokesman Brian Humphrey. A homeless man living in the area was critically burned in the blaze and was transported by ambulance to Mt. Gleason Middle School where he was flown by helicopter to a local hospital. It was not determined whether he was involved with starting the blaze.
Engines from several firefighting entities, including engines from Pacoima, knocked out the blaze in about 15 minutes. The number of acres burned was undetermined Sunday evening.
One resident who did not wish to give his name credits the quick action by firefighters for preventing the blaze from getting out of control.
“When I felt the wind, I said, ‘Oh no, there’s a fire,’” he said.
On Sunday night, the temperature in Sunland was in the low 80s, with winds at 8 miles per hour; however, winds picked up as the night progressed.
“Only one good wind during that fire could have turned this into a much different scene,” said Sunland resident Tomi Bowling.