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Three vegetation fires flare up off HWY 101 near Patterson Avenue in Goleta

calle real homeless fire 1
Santa Barbara County Fire Department
calle real homeless fire 2
Santa Barbara County Fire Department
calle real homeless fire 3
Santa Barbara County Fire Department
Courtesy Photo
Courtesy Photo
Courtesy Photo

GOLETA, Calif. - Santa Barbara County Fire reported that a second and third fire sprang up close by to the vegetation fire that burned off Highway 101 near Patterson Avenue in Goleta on Friday.

Crews stopped the forward progress of the first fire near the Patterson Avenue freeway onramp Friday afternoon.

The fire was called in around 3:52 p.m. and is described as a homeless encampment fire in the vegetation between northbound Highway 101 and the 5400 block of Calle Real.

Eight fire engines responded from Santa Barbara County Fire along with two additional engines from City Fire and Montecito Fire.

The first arriving engine at the scene reported heavy flames and smoke in the trees off the right-hand side of the freeway.

Crews immediately began knocking the fire down from both the freeway and Calle Real sides.

Significant progress was made and buildings were successfully protected.

The second fire reportedly popped up about 100 to 200 yards north of the first scene. Additional fire resources are being sent to the area.

"The original fire started about the size of a football field. Once they contained that, they realized there were two other spots further east of the original fire. The two separate fires after the original one are suspicious. This is given the location of the original fire being extinguished compared to the two other fires," said Santa Barbara County Battalion Chief Adam Estabrook.

At this time, one woman has been transported to Cottage Hospital for burn injuries. She is believed to be someone living in the homeless encampment. No other injuries have been reported.

Forward progress of the fire was stopped around 4:42 p.m. Crews will remain on scene mopping up any hot spots.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office was called to shut down both directions of Calle Real between Patterson and Kellogg as well as the Patterson Avenue onramp.

Highway 101 was closed in both directions temporarily but one northbound lane and all southbound lanes have since reopened.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

The Santa Barbara Humane Society announced that, out of an abundance of caution, they are moving all of their animals to the Santa Maria location for the night.

The humane society is located up Patterson from the fire at 5399 Overpass Road. They said the animals will be brought back to Santa Barbara in the morning.

We will update this story as more information becomes available.

Article Topic Follows: Fire

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Jessica Brest

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