Whittier Fire

Whittier Fire
2017 07 16-
Whittier Fire on July 16, 2017
Location Los Padres National Forest, Santa Barbara County, California
Coordinates 34°34′01″N 119°57′11″W / 34.567°N 119.953°W / 34.567; -119.953Coordinates: 34°34′01″N 119°57′11″W / 34.567°N 119.953°W / 34.567; -119.953
Date(s) July 8, 2017 (2017-07-08) - October 5, 2017 (2017-10-05)
Burned area 18,430 acres (75 km2)
Cause Under investigation
Non-fatal injuries 9
Whittier Fire is located in southern California
Whittier Fire
Location in Southern California

The Whittier Fire was a wildfire in the Santa Ynez Mountains, south of Lake Cachuma, along Highway 154 in Santa Barbara County, California in the United States. The was reported on July 8, 2017, at 1:43 pm.[2] Upon containment on July 28, the fire had burned a total of 18,430 acres (75 km2) and destroyed 16 homes.[1]


A view of the flames from Goleta on July 14, 2017.

The fire, which was first reported at 1:45 p.m. on Saturday, July 7, began burning in the Los Padres National Forest in chaparral that hadn't burned in approximately 70 years, according to officials.[1][3] Reportedly ignited by a vehicle fire, flames jumped Highway 154 and proceed in a southeast direction towards the Santa Ynez Mountains. Eighty people, including mostly children, at Circle V Ranch Camp near Lake Cachuma were forced to shelter in place as when it became too late to evacuate. No campers or staff were injured.[3] Throughout the course of the day, the fire had expanded from 330 to over 5,400 acres (22 km2) as containment sat at zero-percent.[4] Firefighters set up a command center at Dos Pueblos High School.[5]

On the morning of July 9, the fire had burned 7,800 acres and was at 5% containment. Residents along Farren Road inside and west of Goleta were evacuated.[6] 20 structures were destroyed, and a lot of evacuation was done along Highway 154.[7]

In the afternoon on July 9, the fire burned down the Rancho Alegre Outdoor School.[8] The fire remained "completely out of control", and sections of Highway 101 received evacuation warnings.[9] Later that day, it was reported that over 3,600 people had evacuated as a result of the Whittier Fire. [10]

On the morning of July 10, the fire had burned 10,823 acres and was still at 5% containment.[11]

On the morning of July 12, the fire had burned 11,920 acres and was at 48% containment.[12]

As of the evening of July 14, the fire was at 52% containment and had burned 13,199 acres. Due to changing weather conditions, the fire spread westward.[13]

On July 15, containment had dropped to 35% as the fire was pushed down the mountainside toward Goleta due to sundowner winds. It had burned 17,364 acres.[14]

On July 17, containment was at 49% and the fire had burned 18,311 acres.[15]

As of September 12, the fire is still not fully contained. It is stuck at 87% containment due to possible hot spots and reports of smoke. [16]

The fire was finally contained on October 5th. Infrared survey 3 days prior to containment revealed some lingering heat sources, but they are located inside the containment line so the risk of further spread is minimal. [17]

In total, 16 homes and 30 outbuildings were destroyed. One home and six outbuildings were damaged. [1]



  1. ^ a b c d "Whittier Fire". InciWeb. Retrieved September 4, 2017. 
  2. ^ "Whittier Fire". Incident Information. Cal Fire. Retrieved 4 September 2017. 
  3. ^ a b Hesel, Phil. "Whittier, Alamo Fires Prompt Evacuations Amid California Heat Wave". NBC News. Retrieved 8 July 2017. 
  4. ^ "Brush fire near Lake Cachuma prompts evacuations, closes Highway 154". ABC 7 Eyewitness News. Retrieved 8 July 2017. 
  5. ^ http://www.keyt.com/news/wildfire/dos-pueblos-high-school-serving-as-command-center-for-whittier-firefight/583694745
  6. ^ "Whittier Fire burns 7,800 acres. Continued updates and information". NewsChannel 3. Retrieved 9 July 2017. 
  7. ^ Gabbert, Bill. "Whittier fire burns structures and forces evacuations northwest of Goleta, CA". Wildfire Today. Retrieved 9 July 2017. 
  8. ^ Molina, Joshua. "Whittier Fire Destroys Rancho Alegre Outdoor School, Boy Scouts Camp Home". Noozhawk. Retrieved 9 July 2017. 
  9. ^ Bolton, Tom. "Whittier Fire still 'out of control,' grows to more than 7,800 acres". San Luis Obispo Tribune. Retrieved 9 July 2017. 
  10. ^ "3,600 People..." Twitter. Retrieved 9 July 2017. 
  11. ^ Schlepp, Travis; Flores, Oscar. "Whittier Fire burns 10,823 acres. Continued updates and information". NewsChannel 3. Retrieved 10 July 2017. 
  12. ^ Bolton, Tom. "Flare-up on Northeast Side of Whittier Fire Puts Up Lots of Smoke over Santa Barbara". Noozhawk. Retrieved 12 July 2017. 
  13. ^ Hodgson, Mike. "Update: Whittier firefighting resources increased with Sundowner winds expected". Santa Ynez Valley News. Retrieved 15 July 2017. 
  14. ^ Bolton, Tom. "Whittier Fire Puts on Menacing Show as Sundowner Winds Whip Flames". Noozhawk. Retrieved 15 July 2017. 
  15. ^ https://www.edhat.com/news/whittier-fire-49-contained
  16. ^ Bolton, Tom. "Weeks After Suppression Efforts Ended, Full Containment Still Not Declared for Whittier Fire". Noozhawk. Retrieved 29 September 2017. 
  17. ^ Bolton, Tom. "After 3 months, Whittier Fire near Lake Cachuma is finally contained". San Louis Obispo Tribune. Retrieved 11 October 2017. 

[[Category:July 2017 events in the United States