Crews Stop Spread of Brush Fire in Hills of Moraga

Firefighters have stopped the forward progress of a brush fire that broke out in the hills of Moraga early Thursday morning.

The Merill Fire has burned 60 acres and is 60 percent contained as of 3:30 a.m., according to Moraga Orinda Fire District spokesperson Dennis Rain.

“The threat has been greatly diminished, and fire crews are making great progress on the containment line,” Rain said.

No structures have been damaged or destroyed. About 150 firefighters are on the scene.

The fire was first reported at 12:54 a.m. near 46 Merrill Circle North and off Sanders Ranch Road, Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Fire Captain George Laing said. It is burning south of St. Mary’s College but the university doesn’t appear to be threatened at this time.

Moraga police have issued evacuation orders for the Sanders Ranch neighborhood. Residents along Sanders Ranch Road, Merrill Drive and Harrington road were asked to evacuate to St. Monica’s Church at 1001 Camino Pablo.

Residents were advised to only take essential items, only what they could carry with them, to lock windows/doors when leaving and to keep pets on leashes.

Fire officials have set up a command post at Sanders Ranch Road and Merrill Drive. 

This is a developing news story. Details may change as more information becomes available.

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