Aging electrical system suspected of sparking fire at Santa Barbara horse facility

SANTA BARBARA CO, Calif. – An aging electrical system is suspected of sparking a fire at the Hearts Therapeutic Equestrian Center off Calle Real in Santa Barbara County.

The barn went up in flames early Thursday morning and sheriff’s officials working across the street noticed the smoke right away. Fortunately, a fire engine was at the fuel depot at the top of the hill and made it to the site within minutes.

The barn was filled with a month’s supply of hay and no horses.

Riders and volunteers were back Friday afternoon while others dropped off donations. Geri Bidwell, a Santa Barbara resident, dropped off 12 bales of hay for the center’s herd of 16 horses. She said she drove over after she was unable to get through the center’s busy phone line.

“Make a donation,” Bidwell suggested. “Doesn’t have to be a lot. Even $10 dollars, $25 dollars will go a long way for a horse and these kids, the veterans and the people that use this. They really get a lot from it.”

Alexis Weaver, Executive Director of…

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