Red flag conditions to continue
By Sam Catanzaro
Mandatory evacuation orders for Pacific Palisades and parts of Brentwood have been lifted as firefighters continue to battle through Santa Ana winds combatting the Getty Fire, which as of 10:00 a.m. Thursday is at 39 percent containment.
The fire, which broke out in the Sepulveda Pass near the Getty Center around 1:30 a.m. Monday, has burned 745 acres and is at 39 percent containment as of 10:00 a.m. Thursday. According to the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD), 12 structures have been destroyed and 5 have been damaged as 7,091 residential buildings are threatened by the blaze. The Getty Center has not been damaged by the blaze. Two firefighters have suffered non-life-threatening injuries.
In a press conference Tuesday evening, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and the LAFD announced that the fire was sparked by a tree branch falling on a powerline.
“The fire was deemed an accidental start, caused by a tree branch that broke off and subsequently landed in nearby powerlines during high wind conditions. This errant tree branch caused the sparking and arcing of the powerlines, igniting nearby brush. All powerlines on the pole remained intact,” said LAFD Spokesperson Brian Humphrey.
Firefighters worked overnight to cool any hot spots and contain any flare-ups within the current fire perimeter. Adverse weather conditions will continue to be the greatest challenge for firefighters.
“An Extreme Red Flag Warning remains in effect through 6:00 p.m. Thursday. Strong Santa Ana winds gusting between 30 and 50 mph will continue to impact wind prone areas of Los Angeles. Widespread single digit relative humidity is forecasted with poor to no overnight recoveries. This all adds up to an extreme fire weather threat, meaning that conditions are as dangerous for fire growth and behavior as we have seen in recent years.,” Humphrey said.
Evacuation orders have been lifted for the Mountaingate community, Pacific Palisades and most of Brentwood with the exception of the following:
- Tigertail Road at Deerbrook Lane to Chickory Lane
- Stonehill Lane
- Lindenwood Lane
- Sky Lane
- Canna Road
- Chickory Lane
- Bluestone Terrace to Bluegrass Way
- Bluestone Terrace
- Bluegrass Lane
- Bluegrass Way
All lanes of the 405 Freeway are open. Sepulveda Boulevard northbound is open to all traffic and Sepulveda Boulevard southbound from Skirball Center Drive to Sunset Boulevard is presently open to residents with I.D. only. For real-time information on freeway and highway status, visit the Caltrans QuickMap.
The Palisades Recreation Center (851 Alma Real Drive) and Westwood Recreation Center (1350 South Sepulveda Boulevard) have transitioned into shelters with overnight sleeping arrangements and food. Small animals are welcome at these shelters.
Animal evacuation centers include the West Valley Animal Shelter (20655 Plummer Street), West LA Animal Shelter (11361 West Pico Boulevard) and Hansen Dam Recreation Area (11798 Foothill Boulevard) for large animals.
619 personnel are fighting the fire across a range of cooperating agencies, including 118 engines and 5 hand crews.
According to the Los Angles Unified School District, Kenter Canyon Elementary will remain closed Thursday due to the Getty Fire. Other LAUSD schools that have been closed this week will reopen on Thursday and will operate on their regular schedules.