A fire started by contractors working Tuesday on a steep roof of a home on San Andres Street in Santa Barbara caused more than $100,000 of damage, fire officials estimate. The fire was caused by roofers who were working on a portion of the roof, and needed to use a torch to perform a heating operation. Workers had stuck around after using the torch to ensure everything was okay, and left after awhile.
Not long after, a neighbor was outside and smelled smoke. The fire was reported to the Santa Barbara Fire Department at 3:45 p.m. No one was at the home, 1727 San Andres St., at the time. and no injuries were reported. It took 18 firefighters-a total of four engine companies, one ladder truck, and two battalion chiefs-30 minutes to knock down the fire. Fire crews remained for two hours assessing damage. They also spread tarps inside the home to prevent further damage to contents inside. It remains unclear whether or not the direct flame of the torch or just heat generated by the torch ignited the structure, Battalion Chief John Ahlman Wednesday.