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All evacuations lifted for Avila Fire with 400 acres burned, containment up to 20%

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Avila Fire

UPDATE at 7:45 a.m. - Containment of the Avila Fire is up to 20% and the burn area is holding at 400 acres.

All evacuation orders have been lifted.

Firefighters continue to make progress and cool overnight conditions helped them in their fire fight. Air support is expected to continue to hit hot spots in rugged terrain.

Highway 101, which was closed for several hours when the fire broke out Monday afternoon, has reopened in both directions.

AVILA BEACH, Calif. -- Firefighters responded to a fast-moving vegetation fire near Avila Beach Monday afternoon.

At around 2:48 p.m., CAL FIRE received reports of a vegetation fire at Gragg Canyon Rd and North Thompson Avenue near Avila Beach.

CAL FIRE said the vegetation fire is burning on the southwest side of Highway 101 and Avila Beach Drive exit.

As of 6:20 p.m., the burn has reached 400 acres in size, up from the previous 380 acres, and continuing with a moderate rate of spread.

San Luis Obispo City Fire is sending more engines to the scene. Helicopters and planes are helping attack the fire from the air while fire crews and engines battle from the ground.

Fire officials say additional fire engines and aircraft have been ordered. In all, 42 engines, 3 water tenders, 6 helicopters, 10 hand crews, 7 dozers, 10 air tankers and 300 fire personnel worked to battle this blaze throughout the day.

Assistance came from SLO City Fire, Five Cities Fire, Morro Bay Fire, San Miguel Fire, Atascadero, Paso Robles Fire, Santa Barbara County Fire, PG&E, CHP, SLO County Sheriff and Pismo police.


As of 9:15 p.m., The SLO County Sheriff's Office said evacuation orders are lifted in all areas except four streets within the city limits of Pismo Beach. Those four streets are Barcelona, Costa Rica, Costa Brava, and Costa del Sol. CAL FIRE said evacuation orders for those streets are expected to be lifted around 11:30 p.m.

CAL FIRE reported 100 structures were threatened by the fire. However, the threat has been mitigated. Firefighters will continue pushing the fire back overnight.

Previous Coverage:

Evacuations were in progress on Live Oak Lane, Indian Knob Road and Monte Road in SLO County.

As of 4:30 p.m., Gragg Canyon Road and the Pismo Preserve were also evacuated.

Evacuations were underway for neighborhoods north of Mattie Road in Pismo Beach as well as north of Corralitos and east of Mattie Road.

An evacuation warning was in effect for the area east of Highway 101 from N. Bello Street, south to Price Canyon Road and east to the Pismo Beach city limits. Anyone in that area should be prepared to evacuate at any time. All evacuees must head south.

Firefighters said that due to the changing nature of the fire, if you at any point feel in danger you should leave the area immediately.

The Red Cross has been called to set up Evacuation Centers. One center is located at 1168 W. Branch in the Walmart parking lot in Arroyo Grande. A second location is at the Grace Bible Church at 100 Rodeo Drive in Pismo Beach.

SLO City Fire advised the fire is burning in the Shell Beach and Pismo Beach area and moving south. Those located nearby should watch for evacuation information.

No structures have been damaged as of 10 p.m.

Road Closures

As of 11 p.m., one northbound lane of Highway 101 is expected to be reopened around 11:30 p.m. CAL FIRE said PG&E is replacing a pole near the shoulder of the northbound lanes.

As of 8:21 p.m., CHP has confirmed the southbound lanes of Highway 101 are reopened. Northbound lanes remain closed for the fire. Through traffic traveling north is still advised to use State Route 227 as a detour.

As of 9:20 p.m., Mattie Road is reopened for residential traffic.

As of 4:10 p.m., Caltrans closed the northbound lanes of Highway 101 from just north of Spyglass Drive/Mattie Road in the Pismo Beach area to San Luis Bay Drive. They said motorists headed northbound may detour from the US 101 at Oak Park Road and continue east to State Route 227 to reach San Luis Obispo.

Southbound lanes of Highway 101 are closed as well, California Highway Patrol is diverting traffic onto San Luis Bay Drive.

Due to these closures, the SLO County Sheriff reminded drivers not to drive south from San Luis Obispo to the Shell Beach area.

Article Topic Follows: San Luis Obispo County

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