WEATHER »

Eastern Flank Becoming Priority

Strong Winds Expected Again Tonight


Friday, May 8, 2009

The eastern end of the fire is going to be a priority for firefighters today, as the fire pushed across Gibralter Raod into the Tea Fire area, Indy reporter Ben Preston related, following a commander's briefing this morning at 7 a.m. The Jesusita Fire's eastern boundary is Cold Springs Canyon, and it has stayed north of Highway 192 in that area.

Although things have quieted down enormously on the western front, fire danger remains extreme.

CalFire command is expecting strong sundowner winds --similar to those which almost doubled the burned acreage and pushed the fire across Highway 154 last night--to again produce flames 50 to 100 feet in length.

The winds last night, clocked at 40 to 60 miles per hour, pushed the fire into the foothills as far as Maria Ignacio Creek in the eastern Goleta Valley.

The Jesusita fire is reportedly moving about a quarter mile an hour even without wind. The fire has been approaching to within a few feet of ridges and then backing off, Preston reported from the briefing. Spot fires are still a "significant issue."

An 8 a.m. press conference is underway, new mandatory evacuation boundaries at the eastern end of the fire are expected.

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