Cave Fire Ignites in California

Cave Fire Ignites in California

Disaster Alert
November 25, 2019

Source: Los Angeles Times

Approximate locations in current event path*

California

Santa Barbara (Santa Barbara County, 93101, 93103, 93105, 93108, 93109, 93110, 93111, 93117)
Goleta (Santa Barbara County, 93110, 93111, 93117)

*Home damage has not been reported at this time.

NOTE: This has not yet been declared a FEMA Major Disaster.

Firefighters early Tuesday continued to battle a wind-driven brush fire that erupted a day earlier near Highway 154 in Santa Barbara County and burned quickly downhill, threatening thousands of properties and sending residents fleeing from their homes.

The Cave fire started just after 4 p.m. Monday near East Camino Cielo and Painted Cave Road in Los Padres National Forest and has exploded to 3,800 acres with no containment, according to the Santa Barbara County Fire Department. The blaze, fanned by strong sundowner winds, grew overnight and was advancing toward populated areas in the cities of Santa Barbara and Goleta as well as unincorporated areas of the county.

The fire prompted Santa Barbara County officials to declare a local emergency and request that Gov. Gavin Newsom proclaim a state of emergency for the region. The fire is “causing conditions of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property within Santa Barbara County,” the county wrote.

Within three hours of starting, the fire had traveled to the top of Cieneguitas Road near the San Marcos Foothills Preserve. The blaze initially moved into a few canyons and rapidly expanded as it was pushed south by 15 mph down-canyon winds with 30 mph gusts. By 7:30 p.m., the fire was spotting in front of itself and had started at least one spot fire near Highway 154 and Cathedral Oaks Road, said Mike Eliason, a public information officer with the Santa Barbara County Fire Department.

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