Loma Fire 100% Contained

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Update by Santa Barbara City Fire Department
5:00 p.m., May 24, 2021

The Loma Fire started Thursday evening at approximately 8:55 pm, and required all on-duty Santa Barbara City Firefighters as well as assistance from our local operational area mutual aid partners.

The fire managed to damage two structures, but fortunately, no injuries were reported. Santa Barbara Police Department arrested an arson suspect, during the incident Thursday night. Victor Angel Hernandez, age 23 and is being held on five counts of arson and narcotics charges. The bail has been set at two million dollars.

The Loma Fire has been declared 100% contained and firefighters will continue to patrol the area through Tuesday evening.

 Loma Alta Drive will likely remain closed to vehicle traffic tentatively until Monday, May 31st at 8 am. If on foot or bicycle, please use extreme caution in the area as rolling debris and rocks continue to fall onto the roadway which present a hazard.  Santa Barbara City Streets engineers are developing a plan to mitigate the hazards from the falling hillside and open the roadway when it is safe to do so.

Update by Santa Barbara City Fire Department
3:00 p.m., May 23, 2021

The Loma Fire is at 95% containment with crews tentatively remaining on the incident until Monday evening. Loma Alta Drive will remain closed through Monday due to rolling debris onto the roadway. City Streets Department will be on Loma Alta Drive with personnel and equipment Monday to assess the roadway and remove debris.
Thursday May 20, 2021 at approximately 8:55 pm, the Santa Barbara Police Department Combined Communications Center received numerous 911 calls reporting a large vegetation fire on the hillside above the 600 Block of West Ortega Street. The first arriving Battalion Chief named the incident the Loma Fire, because the best access to the fire was off of Loma Alta Drive. The hillside had a large vegetation fire racing uphill, pushed by winds in excess of 50 miles per hour. Firefighters were on scene within minutes and began aggressively fighting the fire by deploying hoses on the hillside and between threatened structures.
Structures were immediately threatened at the top and adjacent to, the hillside commonly referred to as TV Hill. Firefighters were forced to deal with an extremely steep hillside which was difficult to climb while fighting the flames.  Twenty-two operational area fire engines were on scene helping combat the fire. Resources assisting were from Santa Barbara County Fire Department, Montecito Fire Protection District, Carpinteria-Summerland Fire Protection District, and Ventura County Fire Protection District. Wildland firefighting hand crews from Santa Barbara County and one from Cal Fire Camarillo Camp were also used in the firefighting efforts. Every on duty City fire crew was on scene of the incident including Truck 71. Additional Firefighters were called back to duty to staff reserve fire engines for City coverage for other emergencies. Outside agencies also assisted answering emergency calls unrelated to the Loma Incident.
The success of this large scale incident was a direct result of the mutual aid system and all of the outside agency response. California is known as the leader around the Country for the State’s mutual aid system. When resources are needed they are sent immediately. No injuries were reported during the incident.
Santa Barbara has had a several suspicious vegetation fires around the City. The Santa Barbara Police and Fire Departments have had a joint investigation ongoing. Thursday night during the fire an arson suspect was taken into custody. The suspect is Victor Angel Hernandez, age 23. He is being held on five counts of arson. He is also being held on narcotics charges, including possession. The bail has been set at two million dollars.  
Hernandez was a person of interest in several fire related incidents recently and was detained when he was seen returning to the Loma Alta hillside. 
The Santa Barbara Fire Department would like to remind all residents to be prepared for wildfire. Follow the Ready, Set, Go plan.

  • Ready; create and maintain defensible space around your home.
  • Set; prepare your family & home ahead of time for the possibility of having to evacuate. Know what to take and where to go.
  • Go; when wildfire strikes, go early for your safety. Take what you have prepared including medications, pets, all family members and leave.

Update by Santa Barbara City Fire Department
10:00 a.m., May 23, 2021

Current containment @ 95%... Crews expected to remain on scene continuing mop up operations until Monday morning when 100% containment is expected. Drone footage provided Santa Barbara City Fire Department - giving in an interesting perspective of the burn scar. Despite the steep incline, we are grateful to have avoided any significant injuries throughout the incident.

Loma Alta will remain closed through Monday due to rolling debris and Fire department equipment on the roadway. We will continue to provide updated information as it becomes available.

Update by edhat staff
11:00 a.m., May 21, 2021

Santa Barbara Police have arrested a 23-year-old man for arson relating to the Loma Alta Fire. Read the full article here.

The fire is now 70% contained and is estimated to be 7-acres in size. 

Loma Alta Drive will be closed from West Canon Perdido Street to Coronel Street for the remainder of the day and possibly until Saturday. 

Update by edhat staff
7:00 a.m., May 21, 2021

Residents near TV Hill were able to return to their homes early Friday morning as the forward progress of a rapid brush fire was halted.

Evacuations were lifted around 12:30 a.m. and a little over an hour later the Santa Barbara Fire Department declared the Loma Fire 50% contained with approximately 10 acres burned. 

One house and a unit were damaged but no injuries have been reported.

Firefighters remained active throughout the night extinguishing all possible regiment points to ensure no brim leaves the containment line, and mop up continues throughout Friday.

Loma High Road will remain closed to traffic, proceed with caution as emergency services are still in the area. 

The official cause is under investigation.


#Loma Fire- UPDATE- As daylight begins, FF’s continue to mop up hot spots and secure containment. Loma IC reports with GPS mapping, revised acreage has been revised to under 10 acres. Two homes were damaged, none destroyed. No injuries reported. Cause under investigation. pic.twitter.com/ldIJSfdkWb

— SBCFireInfo (@EliasonMike) May 21, 2021



#Loma Fire- UPDATE- As daylight begins, FF’s continue to mop up hot spots and secure containment. Loma IC reports with GPS mapping, revised acreage has been revised to under 10 acres. Two homes were damaged, none destroyed. No injuries reported. Cause under investigation. pic.twitter.com/DvxzRrM1jr

— SBCFireInfo (@EliasonMike) May 21, 2021


Reported by edhat staff
10:45 p.m., May 20, 2021

Evacuations are issued for residents near Loma Alta and Miramonte Drive due to a rapidly spreading brush fire.

Evacuation orders have been issued for the following areas:

  • 900 Block Miramonte Dr to Weldon Rd, 
  • Isleta Ave, 
  • Arroyo Ave, 
  • Weldon Rd, 
  • Loma Alta Dr. from San Andres to Weldon Rd. 

The fire broke out just before 9:00 p.m. Thursday where W. Ortega Street dead-ends below Loma Alta. The fire spread up the hill towards Miramonte Drive where KEYT television station is, also known as TV Hill.

The fire has quickly grown to over 20 acres with numerous home and commercial buildings threatened. 

Multiple fire agencies are on the scene battling the blaze.

This is a developing story.


#Loma Fire - Santa Barbara City Incident- SBC and other agencies working vegetation fire. Loma IC reporting 20 acres with rapid rate of spread. Multiple commercial and homes threatened. Evacuations ordered for Loma Alta Dr & Miramonte Drive. C/T 8:55 pic.twitter.com/bkUcgWDsck

— SBCFireInfo (@EliasonMike) May 21, 2021



#Loma Fire - SB County FF stopping fire that spread to large home off Via del Cielo in Santa Barbara. Fire still at 0% containment and evacuation orders still in place. Please stay out of area. pic.twitter.com/gU8ExRntp2

— SBCFireInfo (@EliasonMike) May 21, 2021


Reported by Edhat Scanner Reporters

Large brush fire in the 600 block of West Ortega heading up TV Hill.

Photos by Josh Blair

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Show Comments
ScannerAndrew May 20, 2021 09:00 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Acre burning in heavy fuels uphill, needing more engines

Roger May 20, 2021 09:02 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

2nd one Subject is Northbound on the tracks from Canon Perdido..K-9 REQUESTED..

ScannerAndrew May 20, 2021 09:04 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Every city engine is on this fire and the other vegetation fire

ScannerAndrew May 20, 2021 09:06 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Fire is moving downhill threatening structures. Fire is also moving uphill fast

Roger May 20, 2021 09:09 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

They are worried about houses in the area everyone who lives in that area get ready to get out..

Roger May 20, 2021 09:11 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

SBPD have a possible suspect at the Carrillo Southbound on ramp...I won't break anymore stories I don't want to take over. There are other code 3 calls please break them..

Roger May 20, 2021 09:12 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Loma Alta and Cornal Harbor Patrol closed Shoreline at Loma Alta..500 BLOCK OF MIRAMONTE IS THREATENED POSSIBLE STRUCTURE FIRE..

Roger May 20, 2021 09:22 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained


Roger May 20, 2021 09:24 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

100 Block of Via Del Cielo Evacuations, 600 Block of Miramonte.. STRUCTURES BEING THREATENED ON Via Del Cielo..

Minibeast May 20, 2021 09:25 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Moving more south now but looks like KEYT in trouble. Something to see from Riviera.

sbres May 20, 2021 09:26 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

How could this not be on the news?!? Evacuations?? Looks huge from the Westside.

a-1621605240 May 21, 2021 06:54 AM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Well, because the fire was lapping at the news' (KEYT) office door

Minibeast May 20, 2021 09:33 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Predominant wind offshore, so fire not moving toward downtown. Flames up from westside Ortega/Loma Alta all the way up to top of hill. Can't tell if home on point is involved, don't think so from our view.

CoastWatch May 20, 2021 09:34 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

KEYT has NO "reporters" on the payroll- Only UCSB Interns and AP /UPI News "Readers" about COVID and the Weather.

MarcelK May 20, 2021 10:37 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

CW is wrong yet again. Palminteri is reporting on Twitter, Facebook, and KEYT.com
But go ahead and fan those flames to no good end.

Roger May 20, 2021 09:43 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

There was a report of a tree fire earlier at 1111 East Mason street East Side..

Roger May 20, 2021 09:39 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Calling Carpinteria Fire in on Another Alarm, Montecito Fire...NO ANSWER AT SOME OF THE RESIDENCES 500 BLOCK OF MIRAMONTE..

Roger May 20, 2021 09:51 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

There is a Command Post set up sounds like they are going to call in Evacuations many knocks on doors going unanswered...Command Post is in the church parking lot at 900 San Andreas..

Minibeast May 20, 2021 09:53 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

9:50 p.m. What we can see from Riviera: Smoke is clearing a bit at bottom of fire at Loma Alta. Engines on Loma Alta. Looks like fire is situated mainly above Loma Alta. South edge/border of fire still some high flames with fire continuing to slowly move south and around the point. There are some fire engines up top on Miramonte, likely keeping that house on point safe. House intact. Firefighters kept fire from moving over the hill toward west and rest of The Mesa. Also looks like KEYT safe now, too.-------- From the beginning, northern edge of fire had a line drawn by fire dept and flames look contained along that border and along Loma Alta.

Roger May 20, 2021 09:58 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Thanks for reporting..Pretty Much all your Scanner Andrew, Others...Thanks for Reporting.

wahine May 20, 2021 09:59 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Thanks for the updates, especially the last minibeast report.

EastBeach May 20, 2021 10:09 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Been watching this from my deck since it started. It's on the north flank of TV Hill above Loma Alta. The east flank has been pushed by the wind in the direction towards Coronel St (but looks like it's got quite a ways before it gets there). East flank did throw up some very tall flare ups 15 mins ago. Overall radiance of the fire isn't as bright as it was. With wind dying down hopefully the threat will dwindle. Amazing/surprising site from the Riviera.

k8b8b May 20, 2021 10:11 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Thank you for the post Roger & Co! Ed hat always has the news first!

lovesbalot May 20, 2021 10:12 PM
Loma Fire 100% Contained

Not much on news ... spread the word. This looks bad.


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