High winds spark and push Central Coast fires

Fire south of San Simeon

By JOSH FRIEDMAN

Amid windy, dry conditions; power lines sparked a pair of fires in San Luis Obispo County on Monday. In Santa Barbara County, a wind-driven fire led to the closure of Highway 101 in the Gaviota area. 

In SLO County, a tree fell into power lines south of San Simeon, sparking a fire. The blaze burned a half acre of grass and brush near Washburn Campground and Gordon Creek roads, according to Cal Fire.

Shortly before 5 p.m., downed power lines started a small fire at the intersection of Ash and Elm Streets in Arroyo Grande. Five Cities Fire personnel arrived at the scene and extinguished the blaze.

Alisal Fire in Santa Barbara County

In Santa Barbara County, a fire broke out near the Alisal Reservoir in the Santa Ynez Mountains. Strong winds pushed the fire, causing it to spread at a rapid rate in the direction of Highway 101 and the Pacific Ocean. By Monday night, the blaze had burned 3,700 acres.

Authorities closed Highway 101 in both directions between Highway 1 and Winchester Canyon Road. The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office issued evacuation orders for the Arroyo Hondo, Tajiguas, Arroyo Quemada and Refugio Canyon areas.

Alisal Fire in Santa Barbara County

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