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UPDATE: Fire east of San Simeon contained

Update. 7:45 p.m.:

A quick-moving fire about three miles from Hearst Castle was declared contained a little more than five hours after it was reported early Monday afternoon.

The fire was in a rugged, rural area along the Rocky Butte Truck Trail, near San Simeon Creek Road, Chimney Rock Road and the Lime Mountain quarry.

The approximately 15-acre blaze reportedly damaged or destroyed several outbuildings, but Cal Fire officials didn’t yet know what those ranch buildings were or what had triggered the fire. The smoke plume was visible for miles.

After a “smoke check” was requested about 12:53 p.m., Cal Fire hit the blaze fast and hard with lots of crews and equipment.

At one point, the agency reported that about 80 firefighters, four air tankers, two bulldozers, two water tanker trucks and a helicopter were among those battling the fire.

The fire was declared contained at 5:31 p.m., according to Patricia Grisham, Cal Fire spokesperson. However, she expected crews to continue fighting, mopping up and monitoring the fire through the night and then be replaced by other crews Tuesday morning. According to emergency-radio calls about 3 p.m. Monday, one of the heavily laden, water-carrying “tender” trucks paused for about a half hour to get clearance before crossing an aging San Simeon Creek Road bridge that’s due to be replaced (along with another about a mile away). However, neither Caltrans nor the county has the funds and local match, respectively, for the $6 million, two-bridge project.

A sign said the bridge is rated to carry 16 tons, but the tender was carrying far more than that, the driver said. He eventually was advised he could cross the bridge, which reportedly had been modified and strengthened somewhat since that rating was posted.

Update. 3 p.m.:

Just before 3 p.m., the fire burning east of San Simeon had grown to 15 to 20 acres, according to Cal Fire.

Multiple outbuildings had been damaged or destroyed.

Original story:

Two structures were threatened by a fire that broke out in a rural area east of San Simeon on Monday afternoon.

The fire on Rocky Butte Truck Trail near San Simeon Creek Road was first reported at 12:53 p.m., according to a Cal Fire news release.

The fire had burned 4 acres as of 2 p.m.

It was unknown what type of structures were threatened.

Approximately 80 Cal Fire personnel were fighting the blaze. Four air tankers and a helicopter were also responding.



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