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Brush fire on Los Angeles hill, fueled by weed whacker

LOS ANGELES – More than 150 firefighters went to a 30-acre brush fire on a Los Angeles hill on Sunday that investigators said was sparked by a weed whacker.

The fire, which led to the evacuation of five homes, broke out on a steep chaparral-covered hills of Mandeville Canyon above Brentwood and sent a plume of smoke that was visible for miles.

The firefighters assisted by water-dropping aircraft were able to contain 70 percent of the fire by late afternoon.

A private company on Mandeville Canyon Road had been using the weed whacker clear brush around homes, when the exhaust overheated, said Battalion Chief Mike Castillo, supervisor to the LAFD’s arson unit.

The five-meter dead-end road through the canyon is home to some of Los Angeles’ wealthiest residents and leads to side roads where the will of the former Gov Arnold Schwarzenegger and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady are the property of homes.

In the desert east of Los Angeles, a 40-acre brush fire in the city of Mecca have forced about 50 people to evacuate from an apartment complex.

Riverside County Fire officials said that residents were allowed to return after firefighters 50 percent of the outbreak.

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