Firefighters arrived just after 3 a.m. Tuesday to a small Isla Vista house on Abrego Road fully engulfed in flames. The two-story structure was so hot firefighters could not get into the building, and what had been a one-alarm fire was immediately called in for a second-alarm response, with additional engine companies arriving, including one from the City of Santa Barbara, said Captain Daniel Bertucelli, spokesperson for Santa Barbara County Fire.
The house was literally in the center of the 6600 block of Abrego, near the “Faux-Op,” a cooperatively run apartment building, tucked back from the street, said Spencer Brandt, president of the Isla Vista Community Services District. His understanding was that the building had been abandoned for some time and was not well-secured. One video posted of the fire shows a green construction fence to one side of the building.
Investigators are examining the site now to try to determine how the fire started, said Bertucelli.