Getty Museum holds fast against fire threat for now

Getty Museum holds fast against fire threat for now

Getty Museum holds fast against fire threat for now

Mandatory evacuations are in place in Bel Air this morning as a fast-moving brush fire that erupted near the 405 freeway near the Getty Center climbed up the hillside, threatening an unknown number of homes.

This part of the 405 is heavily traveled through the Santa Monica Mountains between the western neighborhoods of Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley to the north.

The area is in the vicinity of the devastating 1961 "Bel Air fire" that destroyed about 500 homes. The LA Fire Department has also urged residents to leave the area east of the 405, according to CNN: Mulholland drive to the north, Sunset Blvd to the south, and Roscomare to the East.

The blaze broke out at 3:42 a.m. Tuesday in the area of Gold Creek and Little Tujunga roads, the Los Angeles County Fire Department reported.

"We expect to be out here all week fighting and containing this fire", Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said. At least 150 structures - including one large apartment complex and the Vista Del Mar Hospital, a psychiatric facility - were consumed by flames. "It's critical residents stay ready and evacuate immediately if told to do so".

Skirball Fire Threatens Bel Air Homes
Skirball Fire Threatens Bel Air Homes

"The embers from the trees were dropping on our cars", said Mary Robinson, a Ventura resident, who fled Monday night. The Skirball Center's Zeidler's Cafe is closed due to their close proximity to the fire, and the Hammer Museum's cafe is closed as well.

"Now, everything that I have, except for my lovely family, is gone", she said.

Los Angeles Fire Dispatcher Margaret Stewart said the fire could grow with winds blowing at over 25 miles per hour.

More than 600 firefighters battled the blaze amid strong Santa Ana winds, some gusting at 70 miles per hour.

A red-flag warning, which is for extreme weather conditions that could cause wildfires, is in effect until 8 p.m. PT Friday.

Brush fire breaks out in Los Angeles
Stunned motorists found the hillside ablaze and gridlock below as fire raced towards the homes of numerous city's rich and famous. At least 1,000 firefighters were deployed to the scene. "We are a resilient city, we are a strong city, we are a capable city".

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