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Santa Maria crew assisting with Springs fire

The U.S. Forest Service has sent a strike team to help fight the Springs fire in Camarillo. One of the five engines came from Santa Maria.

If a fire started in the back country of Santa Barbara or San Luis Obispo counties, officials at the Forest Service say we are covered.

Engine 35 responded to the Springs fire Thursday morning. In its place, a crew from the Sequoia Ranger Station from Northern California.

The move was necessary because the back country on the Central Coast is very dry and Forest Service officials want to be ready.

“We have unseasonably high temperatures, we have really high winds, we’re in a red flag warning right now and, we’re getting burning conditions, were getting fire activity like it is in June and July,” said Santa Lucia District Ranger Kathleen Phelps.

Forest Service crews have done preventative work, including controlled burns in the Tepesquet Canyon area.

Even though a lot of brush was burned during the La Brea fire in 2009 and the Zaca fire in 2007, there is still a lot of fuel in the Los Padres National Forest.

Forest officials want to remind people to keep up the defensible space around their homes and other buildings they want to protect. The state requires 100 feet of clearance.

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