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Local News

Highway 154 Reopened Through Whittier Fire Burn Area; Some Evacuation Orders Dropped

Highway 154, closed for the last week due to the Whittier Fire, was reopened Sunday evening, according to fire officials.

The scenic highway — closed from Foothill Road in Santa Barbara to the Highway 246 roundabout in Santa Ynez since the 18,015-acre wildfire broke out July 8 near Lake Cachuma — was reopened at 5 p.m.

In addition, mandatory evacuation orders for Paradise Road and Cachuma Village have been downgraded to evacuation warnings.

No changes have been made to evacuation orders affecting other areas.

Other road closures related to the fire remain in effect.

“Motorists traveling in the area are urged to drive with caution, focus on the roadway and not pull over along the shoulder to view the fire area,” fire officials said on the Inciweb website.

Fire personnel and utility crews continue to work near the highway, and the California Highway Patrol and other law enforcement agencies are patrolling the area to protect their safety and that of motorists.

“The Whittier Fire will continue to smolder for some time,” according to Inciweb. “These ‘smokers’ are well inside the perimeter of the burn and do not pose a threat to the fireline.”

Residents who need assistance returning large animals to their properties are requested to call the Santa Barbara County Animal Services hotline at 805.681.4332.

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Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton 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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