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Wildfire prompts evacuations in Santa Barbara, partial closure of Highway 101



A fire in Santa Barbara prompted evacuations as it threatened over 100 structures in southern California. 

The Alisal fire started on Monday afternoon near the Alisal Reservoir and has since spread to cover about 6,000 acres of “the bone dry vegetation” in the area, according to the Santa Barbara Fire Department.

The fire department added that 600 firefighters were responding to the blaze on Tuesday, and evacuation orders were issued in response to the blaze. 

In a tweet, the fire department’s public information officer Mike Eliason added that the flames had “jumped the four lanes of Highway 101.”

As a result of the growing fire, some parts of Highway 101 were closed to traffic.

“Gusty winds continued overnight,” another update from Eliason said, according to CNN. “Hopefully, lesser winds will allow air support to work the fire today.”

 

CNN, however, reported that winds of 30 to 35 mph with gusts of up to 70 mph grounded some of the planes and aircraft crews that were working to fight the fire.

 

The Alisal fire follows other damaging blazes that California has battled this year, including the Dixie fire near the northern California city of Chico. The Dixie fire, which began in July and is still burning, is currently the state’s second largest fire in history. 

About one in every eight acres of California land has been burned by wildfires in the past decade as officials continue to warn of the dangers of increasing temperatures and dry conditions in the state.

The Hill has reached out to the Santa Barbara Fire Department for more information.





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