Evacuations ended in California wildfire

3:31 AM, Oct 18, 2012   |    comments
file photo of air tanker dropping fire retardant
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SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (AP) -- An aggressive air and ground attack and tamer-than-expected winds have helped firefighters gain a foothold on a wildfire in the hills overlooking Santa Barbara, California.

There were worries that afternoon winds Wednesday would make it much bigger, but firefighters were able to stop its progress, and it's now 40 percent contained

Four helicopters and two air tankers were aiding firefighters on the ground, who were supported by 16 fire engines and several hand crews.

At the fire's height, the fire threatened about 100 homes and deputies went door to door telling people to leave the area. Residents have since been allowed to return

The cause of the fire has not been determined, but fire officials say some power lines were down in the area.

The area, about 75 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles, is known as a fire hazard, especially when "sundowner" winds begin to blow through the canyons toward the ocean in the afternoon.

Associated Press

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