An extremely smoky grass fire starting near Love's Travel Stop and pushed by gentle but consistent winds from the west caused Highway 58 in the area to be shut for nearly an hour Friday afternoon.

The knee-high dry grass that paralleled the north side of Highway 58 burned from Love's all the way east to Tehachapi Willow Springs over-crossing, consuming 19.4 acres, according to the Kern County Fire Department battalion chief on scene.

The thick smoke blowing across the freeway prompted Caltrans and the California Highway Patrol to stop all traffic traveling through the fire zone.

The cause is under investigation and no injuries were reported. Three local engine companies, five patrol units, helicopter 408, one water tender and camp crew 11 were among the responding fire units. Assisting the firefighters were CHP, Caltrans, Tehachapi Police and the Kern County Sheriff's Office.

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