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Rey fire crews stop forward spread, near full containment

Rey fire crews stop forward spread, near full containment

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Fire crews were able to maintain the work done Tuesday and successfully minimize the growth of the Rey fire, which now has burned 32,606 acres and is at 87-percent containment, officials said Wednesday. 

The expected containment date of the fire, burning north of Santa Barbara, is Sept. 5. 

On Tuesday, fire crews constructed a direct line on the remaining uncontained north side of the fire. Their efforts increased the overall containment, and fire activity was minimal, with no growth.

Crews continued to patrol and mop up Wednesday, using air support for fire suppression. Crews are ensuring that the fire perimeter remains secure, suppressing hot spots in the process, officials said.  

Crews have completed approximately 81 percent of suppression repair. Forty-four miles of road used as a fire line have been repaired, along with 32 miles of dozer line and 14 miles of handline.

Waterbars, berm removal and brush chipping continue along the Camino Cielo and Pendola contingency lines. 

Road closures remain in effect on Painted Cave and Gibraltar roads for all nonresidential traffic. East Camino Cielo remains closed to the public, campers and anyone not affiliated with fire operations.

Forest closure remains for portions of the San Rafael and Dick Smith wildernesses. 

No wood, charcoal, campfires, target shooting, smoking or fireworks are permitted in the Los Padres National Forest. 

The cause of the blaze, which began Aug. 18 near White Rock Day Use Picnic Area, remains under investigation.

Gina Kim covers crime and courts for Santa Maria Times. Follow her on Twitter @gina_k210

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