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Investigators Announce Montecito’s Gibraltar Fire Could Be Arson

U.S. Forest Service and Santa Barbara County Fire Department says the 21-acre October blaze was intentionally set

Resources grew to more than 500 people and a fleet of air tankers and helicopters at the peak of the fight to stop the Gibraltar Fire that burned the hills above Montecito.
Resources grew to more than 500 people and a fleet of air tankers and helicopters at the peak of the fight to stop the Gibraltar Fire that burned the hills above Montecito. (Lara Cooper / Noozhawk file photo)

The 21-acre Gibraltar Fire that charred the Montecito Peak area could have been caused by arson, as investigators from the U.S. Forest Service and Santa Barbara County Fire Department announced this week that the blaze was was intentionally set by someone. 

“This unknown party ignited the dry vegetation immediately adjacent to the Cold Springs Trail,” investigators said in a statement Wednesday. 

The fire was first noticed around 5:15 a.m. Oct. 29 and a fierce firefighting effort from the ground and the air got it mostly contained within two days.

Flames and the response spread quickly and the Gibraltar Fire was initially thought to be a 50-acre impact. 

The investigation into the fire cause is ongoing and anyone with information about the identity of the person or persons responsible should call investigators at 805.925.9538 extension 238. 

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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