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Crews extinguished a 3-acre brush fire that sparked Thursday near the 5200 block of Dominion Road, southeast of Santa Maria, using a combination of ground and air support. 

First reported at approximately 11:50 a.m., crews from the Santa Barbara County Fire Department responded to reports of smoke in the area east of Orcutt, Battalion Chief Chris Childers said. Encountering a small fire burning in light brush and grass with a slow rate of spread, crews began to attack the blaze from the ground.

A helicopter and a six-person crew from the U.S. Forest Service also responded.

Santa Barbara County Fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni said the fire threatened no structures and prompted no evacuations.

The fire began on a hill east of Dominion Road and worked its way east, creating a second small spot fire, Childers said. Two air tankers performed drops of fire retardant and a dozer was used to create a fuel break around the flames.

After more than an hour, several hand crews, two air tankers and a helicopter were able to get the upper hand on the fire. 

Fire crews remained on scene into the early afternoon to put out hot spots, Childers said. 

Though the cause of the fire has yet to be determined, crews reported a blown electrical transformer and downed power lines at the start of the fire.

A power outage Thursday afternoon affected about 450 customers west of the Garey and Sisquoc communities and east of Highway 101 for part of the afternoon.


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Mathew Burciaga covers education in Santa Maria and the surrounding area for Lee Central Coast Newspapers. Follow him on Twitter @math_burciaga