Scanner traffic beginning around 10:00 p.m. indicated firefighters and law enforcement were dispatched to the intersection of Highway 101 and Lake Mendocino Drive after reports emerged of people in the area starting fires.
Once on scene, first responders were able to quickly contain the fire that was described as a 20’x50′ spot.
Witnesses described an older man with a white beard and white hair, between 70-80 years of age, accompanied by a white, male teenager pouring gasoline on a tree and then fleeing the scene in a truck.
California Highway Patrol is shutting down the Highway 101 northbound off-ramp onto Lake Mendocino Drive as they investigate and secure the scene.
UPDATE 10:30 p.m.: The dispatcher broadcasted a description of the suspects as well as a white truck to nearby agencies as they continue their search for them.
UPDATE 10:58 p.m.: The Highway 101 northbound off-ramp has reopened.
Please remember that this story is unfolding. Information is being reported as we gather it. However, some of the information coming from witnesses and initial official reports could be wrong. We will do our best to get the facts but, in the case that something is inaccurate, we will update with correct information as soon as we can.