Big Bear News – Mentone, CA – UPDATE: 7:00PM – Unified Command with the Redlands Fire Department were able to stop the forward rate of spread of the Mill Fire holding it at 3.3 acres. All aircraft called to the incident have been released. A section of Highway 38 remains closed until approximately 8pm or 9pm. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
At about 4:45pm on Friday, July 2nd, KBHR received a report of a vegetation fire at the bottom of Highway 38 near Bryant. The fire grew to approximately 3 acres before fire crews were able to build a line around it and stop the rate of spread. With the fire only 200 yards off the highway, at 5:45pm, CHP closed a section of Highway 38 between Bryant and Garnet in the vicinity of the fire. That section of Highway 38 is now closed for 3 hours until about 9pm. There is a detour around the closure but traffic is quickly backing up. At this time, it is advisable that travelers avoid Highway 38 and use the alternate routes of Highway 18, the front grade through Running Springs, or Highway 18 to and from Lucerne Valley.