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Assessment crews determine more homes, structures burned in Whit - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Assessment crews determine more homes, structures burned in Whittier Fire

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Damage done to Camp Whittier by the Whittier Fire. (Photo: Mike Eliason, SB Co. Fire) Damage done to Camp Whittier by the Whittier Fire. (Photo: Mike Eliason, SB Co. Fire)

Nine more homes and dozens more structures have reportedly burned in the Whittier Fire.

Fire officials said Sunday the damage was done in first hours after the fire began July 8, but damage assessment teams are just now completing the assessments with the help of new software technology.

Officials had previously said eight homes and 12 outbuildings had burned. That number has now changed to 17 homes and 36 outbuildings.

More than 1,900 personnel are currently battling the 18,015-acre blaze, which is 36 percent contained.

The fire Sunday continued backing down the south slope of the Santa Ynez Mountains above the canyons west of Goleta.

As it nears the bottom of the slope, fire officials say flanking runs and short, intense burning could take place.

The fire broke out the afternoon of July 8 along Highway 154 near Cachuma Lake and grew quickly.

Highway 154 is closed from Highway 246 to Foothill Road (Highway 192). Officials say there is a possibility the highway will re-open Sunday night, depending on fire behavior throughout the day.

Evacuation orders and warnings remain in effect.

The cause is under investigation.

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