Firefighting helicopters work the Whittier Fire Sunday July 9, 2017

Paul Wellman

Firefighting helicopters work the Whittier Fire Sunday July 9, 2017

Nearby Wildfires Simmer Down

Whittier, Alamo Blazes Have Cost An Estimated $55 Million to Fight

The Whittier Fire is all but out, and its Type III federal overseers have given back control of the incident to Los Padres National Forest. As of mid-morning on July 26, firefighting crews ​— ​who stopped working night shifts last weekend ​— ​had achieved 87 percent containment of the wildfire, which has burned 18,430 acres at a cost of nearly $35 million. “There are still isolated pockets of heat and unburned islands within the fire perimeter, but no forward progression is likely,” according to the Forest Service. “Crews are continuing work in the front country to construct and improve fire line.”

Whittier destroyed 16 residences and 30 outbuildings. Elsewhere in the county, crews fully contained the The Alamo Fire on July 19, after a 13-day firefight costing roughly $20 million. The Alamo Fire started off Highway 166 near Twitchell Reservoir and burned nearly 29,000 acres ​— ​roughly 45 square miles ​— ​in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties. The fire destroyed one residence and damaged one structure. Both fires remain under investigation.

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Whittier Fire: July 22-23, 2017

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