Thomas Fire grows to 45k+ acres - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Fire officials: Thomas fire jumps Hwy 101, heading west toward Solimar Beach

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(Credit: Jose Rivas) (Credit: Jose Rivas)

UPDATE (9:10 p.m.) Fire officials have confirmed the Thomas Fire in Ventura County has jumped Hwy 101, heading west toward Solimar Beach.

One of CAL FIRE's control objectives included keeping the fire East of Hwy 101.

New evacuation orders have been issued for the Ventura County North Coast area.

Evacuation orders include the boundary of Hwy 33 on the north to Casitas Vista Road, northwest to Hwy 150, Hwy 150 (Casitas Pass Road) west to US 101 and south on US 101 (including Pacific Coast Highway) to Emma Wood State Beach.

In upper Ojai Valley, evacuations are ordered for Hwy 150 from Dennison Grade east to Osborne Road and all residences north.

UPDATE (6:10 p.m.) - Fire officials say approximately 38,000 people have been evacuated due to the Thomas Fire in Ventura County.

Evacuation orders have been issued for the entire community of Casitas Springs. 

In the East Ojai Valley, evacuations have been ordered for Carne Road east to McAndrew Road and Reeves Road north to Thacher Road.

In the City of Ventura, evacuation orders include Teloma east to Brent Street, Telegraph Road north to Foothill Road, Victoria Road east to Hill Road, and North Ashwood Avenue east to Hill Road.

Road closures include Vassar Street at Maryville Avenue in the City of Ventura. In the Ojai Valley, Highway 150 is closed at Reeves Road. In Santa Paula, Highway 150 is closed at Stonegate, Telegraph Road, and Richmond Road. Foothill Road is also closed at Olive, Cummings, Wells, and Briggs. In Casitas Springs, Highway 33 is closed at Nye Road and Creek Road north of Highway 33 is closed.

UPDATE (1:45 p.m.) - The Thomas Fire has now grown to 50,000 acres, according to CAL FIRE. There is no containment.

UPDATE (12:30 p.m.) - Fire officials say erratic weather behavior continues to fuel a fast-moving wildfire burning in Ventura County.

The Thomas Fire broke out Monday evening in Santa Paula and was still burning out of control Tuesday morning after charring more than 45,000 acres and destroying at least 150 structures.

Fire officials said early Tuesday afternoon that the flames were heading in a westerly direction toward Casitas Springs.

Mandatory evacuations are in effect for the approximately 1,000 residents in that area. 

Highway 33 east is closed and Highway 33 west is backing up as people try to make their way out of the Ojai area. 

UPDATE (8 a.m.) - Fire officials in Ventura County say the rapidly-growing Thomas Fire has now burned more than 45,000 acres and is 0 percent contained. They say fuel conditions for the fire "are absolutely about as bad as they could be for fire conditions." An injury was reported when a battalion chief was injured in a traffic collision. 

The biggest concern for firefighters Tuesday is structure protection in the city of Ventura, fire officials sad at Tuesday morning's press conference. Other areas of concern include Santa Paula and the community of upper Ojai.

Fire officials say all of those areas have some form of evacuation warnings or orders in effect. 

For evacuation shelter information, click here.

Smoke from the fire can be seen in Carpinteria. Some drivers are even wearing face masks. (KSBY photo)

A wildfire burning in Ventura County, known as the Thomas Fire, has grown to more than 45,000 acres since it sparked Monday night. 

The fast-moving brush fire is moving north of Santa Paula, along Highway 150 and Bridge Road, near Thomas Aquinas College.

The Associated Press reports nearly 27,000 homes have been evacuated after a wind-whipped wildfire exploded overnight in Southern California.

Authorities say Ventura, a city of over 100,000 people 12 miles away, is expected to feel the effects of the fire soon.

There are mandatory evacuations ordered for the following areas according to Ventura County's alert page:

  • 436 homes east of Dickenson Road, north of Monte Vista Drive along Highway 150 and South of Thomas Aquinas College to the area of Bridge Road.
  • 154 homes west of Dickenson Road to Atmore Road, north of Foothill Road and west to Wheeler Canyon Road.
  • 213 homes north of Highway 150 from Koenigstein Road west to the Dennison Grade, north to Reeves Road, east to McAndrew Road and north to Grand Avenue

Evacuation center locations: Ventura County Fairgrounds at Miners Building (Includes an Animal Shelter for all types of animals), at 10 W Harbor Blvd, Ventura, CA 93001; Nordhoff High School, at 1401 Maricopa Hwy, Ojai, CA 93023.

Updated information on evacuations and road closures can be found on Ventura County's alert website here

Several other schools have been shut down. The Oxnard School District has canceled classes tomorrow.

Fire crews say multiple structures have been burned so far, but it was unclear what they were. 

There are local fire crews that have been dispatched to the Thomas Fire, including with CAL FIRE SLO. 

There were several power outages in the area, including areas in Santa Barbara County; initially Carpinteria, Santa Barbara, Goleta were experiencing problems but their power has since been restored. 

The following cities in Ventura County had power outages:

  • Santa Paula
  • Ojai
  • Oxnard 
  • Port Hueneme
  • Camarillo
  • Ventura

Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley and Malibu were also experiencing outages overnight, but those were due to strong winds. 

This story will be updated. Follow our Facebook and Twitter pages for more updates from our on-air talent.  


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