BANNING, Calif. (AP) — A new fire in Riverside County is now burning wilderness south of Banning, a city that has been flanked by a fire to the north since Wednesday.

Fire officials say the vegetation blaze in steep, rugged terrain was reported just before noon Saturday and quickly grew to 650 acres.

More than 400 firefighters are fighting the fire, with the help of two helicopters and seven air tankers.

State Route 243, a two-lane mountain highway leading from Banning to Idyllwild, was closed to traffic.

Temperatures are in the low 80s in the area, with low humidity reported. Wind gusts of up to 20 mph are recorded.

No structures are threatened.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.


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