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UPDATE: Evacuation orders lifted for area near McMurray Fire

Posted at 3:34 PM, Sep 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-10 00:55:18-04

UPDATE (9:54 p.m.) - Power has been restored to residents near the fire, according to PG&E's outage map.

UPDATE (8:17 p.m.) - Santa Barbara County Fire says all evacuations were lifted at 8 p.m.

The fire is 20 percent contained and down to 200 acres, as of 7:45 p.m.

According to the PG&E's outage map, 1,745 residents are still without power. The company anticipates returning power to customers by 10 p.m.

UPDATE (6:38 p.m.) - Santa Barbara County is reducing the evacuation order for the area near the McMurray Fire to a warning.

That includes the area east of Highway 101, north of Croft Ln./Ballard Rd., west of Ballard Canyon Rd., and south of Highway 154.

The fire, which began as a string of four separate fires along Highway 101 north of Buellton, broke out at around 3:15 p.m. on Monday.

Santa Barbara County Fire officials say it has burned 200 acres.

The California Highway Patrol reports that one northbound lane of Highway 101 is now open to traffic.

Firefighters are expected to remain on scene overnight.

The cause is under investigation.


UPDATE (5:58 p.m.) - Another fire has caused the closure of northbound Highway 1 just north of Highway 101 in Santa Barbara County.

It was reported shortly before 5:30 p.m.

The California Highway Patrol recommends drivers use Highway 246 as an alternate route.

UPDATE (5:10 p.m.) - Fire officials estimate the fire to be 150-200 acres. Approximately 600 firefighters from various agencies have been dispatched to the scene. Evacuations remain in place.


UPDATE (4:50 p.m.) - Evacuations have been ordered for the area east of Highway 101, north of Croft Ln./Ballard Rd., west of Ballard Canyon Rd., and south of Highway 154.

UPDATE (4:06 p.m.) - Northbound Highway 101 between Highway 246 and Highway 154 is closed because of multiple fires in the area, according to the California Highway Patrol.

The fires were reported at about 3:15 p.m. north of Buellton.

Santa Barbara County firefighters were responding and a second alarm response was called, including a request for aircraft. A CAL FIRE strike team from San Luis Obispo County was reportedly on its way to the scene and a VLAT - a Very Large Air Tanker - had been ordered.

Fire officials say there are four separate fires burning in the area with the potential to burn up to 700 acres. The flames were being pushed by a strong westerly wind, according to Santa Barbara County Fire Department PIO Daniel Bertucelli.

Caltrans suggests using Highway 154 or Highway 1 as a detour to get around the closure. The northbound Highway 101 on-ramp from Highway 246 is also closed. The southbound lanes of Highway 101 remain open at this time.


(3:34 p.m.) - Firefighters were responding to reports of two vegetation fires in the Buellton and Santa Ynez areas Monday afternoon.

The first was reported at about 3:13 p.m. along northbound Highway 101 near the Highway 246 offramp.

The California Highway Patrol reported a grass fire was closing the slow lane in the area.

Less than 10 minutes later, another fire was reported along northbound Highway 101 near the Highway 154 offramp.

No other information was immediately available.