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Only Minor Growth In Santa Barbara County's Cave Brush Fire Tuesday; 10% Containment

The Cave Fire smolders near a bridge in an area that was where one of the big firefights occurred

After Santa Barbara County's Cave brush fire exploded in size Monday, firefighters started to get a handle on the blaze Tuesday with only minor growth reported.

The fire stands at just over 4300 acres burned Tuesday night, with 10% containment.

No homes have been lost to the fire.  About 4000 of the 5000 evacuees from the blaze were allowed to return home Tuesday afternoon. Highway 154 remains closed.

The gusty, erratic wind which help the fire quickly spread after it started Monday afternoon eased Tuesday morning.  Firefighters were able to bring in air tankers to help battle the fire as it moved through rugged, largely inaccessible areas of San Marcos Pass.

Rain could help and hinder firefighting efforts.  Two to four inches of rain is predicted for mountain areas of Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties between Tuesday and Thursday nights, with the heaviest rainfall expected early Wednesday. 

While the rain could help speed up the fire's containment, it could also lead to flooding and debris flows hapering the efforts of firefighters working on Highway 154, which cuts through the fire zone.