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Brush fire burns 25 acres in Griffith Park [updated @ 5:39 pm]

Los Feliz  —  An afternoon brush fire in Griffith Park forced the evacuation of more than 2,000 people from the Griffith Observatory and prompted the closing of major streets into the park before firefighters were able to contain most of the blaze.

The fire, which began shortly after 2 pm northwest of the observatory, blackened about 25 acres, according to the L.A. Fire Department. Officials said about 200 firefighters managed to stop the blaze from advancing about 90 minutes after it began but have not yet declared it knocked down. The fire was described as being 80% contained after 5 pm.

The fire came within about a quarter mile of the observatory, where visitors were ordered to leave the hilltop landmark because of smoke. However, officials said the structure was never threatened by the flames.

There have been no reports of injured or damage to structures. But several vehicles were either burned or charred, according to officials.

No word yet on what caused the fire.

Vermont and Hillhurst avenues near Griffith Park were closed to clear the way for fire engines and other emergency vehicles, according to Councilman David Ryu.

The public is being asked to stay away from the park until firefighting and cleanup operations are completed.

This story has been updated with the latest reports from LAFD

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