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Santa Barbara, Calif., fights wildfire

Oct. 17, 2012 at 2:34 PM

SANTA BARBARA, Calif., Oct. 17 (UPI) -- A wildfire near Santa Barbara, Calif., brought Wednesday's morning commute to a halt and is threatening homes, fire officials said.

The blaze, believed to have been caused by downed power lines, has been named the "Lookout Fire" and threatens about 100 homes in the Lotus Retreat area of the municipality, the Santa Barbara, Calif., Independent reported.

Highway 154 has been closed in the vicinity of the fire, the California Highway Patrol said.

Santa Barbara County Fire Department spokesman David Sadecki said the county's Air Resources Unit, the Santa Barbara City Fire Department, the Santa Barbara Sheriff's Department and the California Highway Patrol are working to contain the fire.

The Sheriff's Department is engaged in a search-and-rescue evacuation of people in nearby homes, KSBY-TV, San Luis Obispo, Calif., reported.

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