WeatherFire Watch


Caballo Fire burned dangerously close to homes in Santa Ynez

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Posted at 6:10 AM, Sep 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-07 09:10:52-04

All evacuation orders for residents in Los Olivos due to the Caballo Fire have been lifted. The vegetation fire came dangerously close to homes in Santa Ynez and left residents scrambling to make a quick exit.

Quick action from first responders and homeowners taking steps to reduce wildfire risks is what ultimately saved a home from the flames.

"Within a half-hour, there was not really a fire and then it was pretty much engulfed in flames," said Santa Ynez Home Owner Kimberly Woloson.

Woloson said flames engulfed the area surrounding her house in just minutes.

"It was pretty scary and I'm not usually a person who gets rattled easily but I was a little rattled," said Woloson.

They saw the fire at their property line from their backyard and knew it was time to go.

"Our pool and our yard is right past where that green part starts, so you can see how quickly it could have jumped over that," said Woloson.

Fire officials said the time of year combined with high temperatures and winds were a perfect combination for a wildfire to ignite. Though there were structures threatened by the fire, none of them burned.

"There was good defensible space around a lot of the structures and that helped slow the fire's progress toward those homes," said Mike Eliason, Santa Barbara County Fire PIO.

As the Woloson's pulled out of their driveway, emergency crews dropped a pink powder on their home.

"To get this fire retardant on as quickly as they did, especially when you see how close the fire came, is probably one of the reasons that the houses did not catch on fire," said Woloson.

The Woloson's lost a house to a wildfire years ago and are glad that wasn't the outcome today thanks to first responders.

"This isn't our first rodeo, but hopefully it's our last," said Woloson.

Most importantly everyone, animals, and people made it out safely during the evacuation order.

Fires are not uncommon this time of year in Southern California and fire officials tell us it's important to make sure you have defensible space and a plan in place to be ready to go if a fire does occur.