ABC reporter Greg Lee, who tweeted a video of the fire, said: "Cannot stress this enough: stay off the 91E if you can help it".
The fire initially broke out about 1:30 p.m. Monday in the Coal Canyon area.
Evacuations were in place for about 300 homes in the Dominguez Ranch area, with residents invited to take shelter at Corona High School. It was just 5 percent contained late in the evening.
At least 500 homes remained under mandatory evacuation orders but authorities were hopeful some residents would be allowed to return.
As of the middle of the afternoon, OCFA PIO was reporting that about a hundred firefighters were at the scene, with three helicopters and a fixed wing making drops.
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It is burning in the foothills of the Santa Ana Mountains.
Additionally, crews were setting backfires, hoping to keep the fire from crossing the freeway.
Authorities ordered residents of all homes south of Green River Road - from the 91 Freeway to Trudy Lane, including the Orchard Glen Tract - to leave as more than 300 firefighters trudged through steep, rugged terrain.
For many commuting from the Inland Empire to Orange County, the Riverside Freeway is the only access point, Olivera said. Closed roads caused halted traffic in the area.
Santa Ana winds blowing 20 to 25 miles per hour were fanning the flames, according to reports from the scene. Adams Elementary School, Cesar Chavez Academy, Coronita Elementary School and Prado View Elementary School have announced they will be closed.
Two lanes of the eastbound 91 freeway near Coal Canyon Road remained closed Tuesday, according to the California Highway Patrol. "But we're asking the public, if possible, to avoid the eastbound 91".
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