Forward progress stopped on Mesa Fire in Los Olivos area

Xavier Trudeau
Juillet 18, 2017

Witnesses reported seeing heavy smoke created by a fast moving fire.

Firefighters are battling a new brush fire in Santa Barbara County.

Crews stopped the forward progress of a fast-moving vegetation fire that broke out Monday afternoon and closed Foxen Canyon Road in the Santa Ynez Valley.

As of 5:25 p.m., the fire had stopped growing after burning approximately 35 acres, lower than the 50 acres estimated initially, fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni added. Two helicopters and four air tankers were reportedly making drops at one time with ten engines and two hand crews also on scene. CHP is attempting to close several roads in the area near Foxen Canyon and Zaca Lake.

The fire was reported burning on both sides of the road, with some spotting behavior.

Personnel from the Santa Barbara County Fire Department and other agencies were dispatched just before 3 p.m. Monday to the site north of Los Olivos.

No structures were immediately threatened.

He added that crews would stay on the fire overnight for mop-up and to watch for hot spots. Crews are making good progress and now, the fire is burning in a direction where it will run out of fuel towards vineyard areas, said Zaniboni.

The initial size-up was about 30 acres burned, with the potential for 300-400 acres, according to Fire Department spokesman Mike Eliason.

The blaze, dubbed the Mesa fire, was estimated at more than 50 acres about 4:15 p.m., but a later report from an AirTac aircraft surveying the area downgraded the acreage to about 35 acres, Zaniboni said.

KSBY has a crew at the scene and will have updates as they become available.

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