Wednesday has been another big day of progress for the three thousand firefighters trying to control a pair of brush fires in Santa Barbara County.
Containment is up to 65% on the Alamo Fire, the 29,000 acre blaze burning northeast of Santa Maria. And, firefighters say they have 48% containment of the Whittier Fire, the nearly 12,000 acre fire south of Lake Cachuma in the Santa Ynez Mountains.
Firefighters say they are continuing to chip away at the Whittier fire, but say rugged terrain at both the east, and west ends of the blaze is making building containment lines difficult. Incident Commander Mark Von Tillow says they are getting the ground, and aerial resources they need to stop the blaze, from more hand crews to bulldozers.
Highway 154 remains closed from Santa Barbara to Highway 246, in the Santa Ynez Valley.
Meanwhile, things are going well enough with the Alamo Fire near Twitchell Reservoir that all mandatory evacuation orders were lifted Wednesday. Evacuation warnings remain in effect, with the areas involved are open to residents only. Firefighters are keeping a close eye on the weather, with another heat wave in the forecast for the coming weekend.