California firefighters battle blazes north and south

GILROY, Calif. (AP) — California firefighters battled large wildfires in Santa Clara and Los Angeles counties on Monday.

A fire that has burned more than 2.3 square miles north of Gilroy was 15% contained, and a smaller fire east of Morgan Hill was 80% contained, Cal Fire said.

Weather conditions in that region improved early in the morning, with increasing humidity, decreasing winds and cooling temperatures, the National Weather Service said. But the service warned that fuels remain very dry.

In north Los Angeles County, firefighters gained 30% containment of a 2-square-mile fire near Agua Dulce, but were concerned about a return of weather conditions that spread the flames when it erupted Sunday afternoon.

“The challenge is the fact we’ll again be hot and dry today,” said county fire Chief Deputy David R. Richardson.

On Sunday, the fire disrupted travel on State Route 14 and authorities set up an evacuation area where residents were instructed to remain in their cars.

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