UPDATE: Lincoln Fire in Mecca Gains Acreage and Containment, Shuts Off Power

Carmela Karcher

As of 7:30 p.m., the Lincoln Fire burning in Mecca has been mapped at 39 acres and is 60% contained.

The fire started shortly after 11 a.m. this morning near Lincoln and 64th Avenue.

As the fire spread this afternoon, it damaged some electrical equipment.

Imperial Irrigation District (IID) is there replacing electrical poles and as a result, it will shut off power for about 167 homes and structures in the area

They say those outages will last until about 9:30 p.m.

A dozen or more fire trucks have been there all day with 80 firefighters on site trying to gain containment and calm the flames.

The vegetation is thick and is standing about 20 feet tall, so when crews arrived, they found flames reaching about 40 feet in the air.

Pockets of smoke pop up in different locations but they have been able to contain the flames as the forward rate of spread has now stopped.

But since IID is replacing electrical poles, some roads in the area have closed.

We still do have some road closures,” CAL FIRE Battalion Chief Paul Heitzmann said. “We do have access to the apartment complexes along with the mobile home park, both on 63rd Avenue and 64th Avenue. We do have the roadway on Lincoln shut down in between those two streets so that way we can allow for IID to do their work with the electrical infrastructure as well as our crews doing mop up along the roadways.”

Heitzmann continued to say crews will be present throughout the night and potentially Thursday morning.

As of now, no structures are threatened and no evacuation orders have been put in place.

Earlier Wednesday, Mecca Elementary School did evacuate but that was voluntary due to the thick smoke in the air.

NBC Palm Springs has gotten an update from CVUSD who spoke with the fire chief and said the air quality should be good enough for students to return to school Thursday.

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