RV owner escapes burning vehicle on Highway 101

Some valuables saved by city firefighters

An RV owner escaped unhurt after this fire on Highway 101 in Santa Barbara. (John Palminteri/KEYT photo)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The owner of a recreational vehicle has escaped unhurt after a fire on Highway 101 this morning.

Ray Nevarez stopped the RV at the northbound Hope Ave. off ramp when it was smoking and running rough.

He had just filled up with gas.

"And then so I pulled off right here and it dies, and smoke started coming out of it," said Nevarez.

The RV was destroyed minutes later by an engine compartment fire.

Santa Barbara City Firefighters tried to save belongings inside.  Nevarez got his laptop, important papers, and a guitar.   He was relieved to get those items.  Clothing was burnt and soaked as it was brought out.

Nevarez said ironically he was trying to get a newer RV, possibly by next week.

After the fire, Nevarez says he was helped by employees nearby at the Bunnin Chevrolet  dealership who rendered assistance.

Even though the fire was on the off ramp, traffic backed up about two miles on the freeway, because of the smoke, multiple fire crews, police and the California Highway Patrol on the scene.

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