kern and county and fire
A fire helicopter makes a water drop on a brush fire caused by lightning strikes along Highway 58 in Kern County, California, September 10, 2011. Reuters

Residents of Stallion Springs, Calif., were forced to evacuate on Monday as a string of lightning-caused wildfires erupted in the area, Capt. Joshua Valverde of the Gilroy Fire Department said.

The fire began on early Saturday and as of Monday afternoon it consumed at least 25,000 acres. The mandatory evacuation order was in place for parts of Stallion Springs, Capt. Bill Brickey of the fire department said.

Firefighters effectively kept structures away from catching fire on Sunday. More than 500 residents in and around the community west of Tehachapi were removed, police said.

The Keene Complex fires are 92 percent contained but firefighters are facing a hard time for extinguishing the larger Comanche Complex fire near Arvin, according to CalFire.

On Sunday afternoon the fire activity increased and it moved towards the Stallion Springs area, which prompted mandatory evacuation alert to the residents. The fires, 30 percent contained, are still threatening 2,300 structures; Los Angeles times reported quoting officials.

Three groups of fires covered around 87 square miles. Two fire complexes were southeast of Bakersfield, near Arvin and Tehachapi, and a third complex in the northern part of the county had reached Sequoia National Forest, the New York Times reported.

The Caliente School District in Central California was closed because of the wildfire.