I-5 southbound closed at Ashland as California firefighters battle out-of-control wildfire

The Klamathon fire grew to 5,000 acres Thursday. (Photo: Mark Dibelka)

Interstate 5 southbound is closed at Ashland at the request of California authorities working to evacuate people near a wildfire there.

The Oregon Department of Transportation said I-5 is closed at Ashland. Southbound traffic should take Exit 14. There is no estimated time the freeway would be reopened.

ODOT said CalTrans and the California Highway Patrol requested authorities in Oregon halt traffic headed into California "due to a wildfire with evacuations at Hornbrook."

Northbound traffic is being stopped by in California at the North Yreka exit.

The fire has burned an estimated 5,000 acres and was burning out of control as of Thursday night, threatening multiple structures. Some of them have already been damaged or destroyed, authorities said. It was zero percent contained.

California Gov. Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency in Siskiyou County because of the fire.

California fire authorities said an evacuation order is in effect for Klamathon Road and other areas.

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