About two-thirds of the city of Malibu was ordered evacuated early Friday as a ferocious Southern California wildfire roared toward the beachside community that is home for many Hollywood celebrities.
According to the City of Malibu, the entire area south of the 101 Freeway to the ocean, and from the Ventura County line to Las Virgenes Road / Malibu Canyon Road is under mandatory evacuation, including much of the City of Malibu, due to progress of the Woolsey Fire. The City of Malibu east of Las Virgenes Road / Malibu Canyon Road is under voluntary evacuation. Residents are urged to use Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) to evacuate and avoid canyon roads.
The Los Angeles County Fire Department tweeted that the fire raging through the Santa Monica Mountains was headed to the ocean and described the fire as an “Imminent threat!”
The fire erupted Thursday at about 3 p.m. near the northwest corner of the city of Los Angeles as the region’s notorious Santa Ana winds gusted, triggering overnight evacuations of an estimated 75,000 homes in western Los Angeles County and eastern Ventura County.
The Woolsey Fire jumped the 101 Freeway at Liberty Canyon Road and Chesebro Road. The 101 Freeway is closed in both directions from Las Virgenes Road to Reyes Adobe Road. There are power outages in the Big Rock and Carbon Beach areas of Malibu. Traffic signals are out on PCH from Topanga Canyon Road to John Tyler Road. Approach all intersections with caution.
Large animals can be evacuated to the Zuma Beach parking lot in Malibu (30050 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA 90265), and Hansen Dam Equestrian Center (11127 Orcas Ave., Lake View Terrace CA 91342).
The American Red Cross has notified the City that the nearest evacuation center for residents of Malibu is expected to be at Palisades High School (15777 Bowdoin St, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272).
Mandatory evacuations were already in effect north of the 101 Freeway from Valley Vista to Reyes Adobe (areas of Agoura Hills, Calabasas and Westlake Village).
Another fire was burning farther west in Ventura County, also moving toward the ocean.
At a joint press conference to provide information, several officials credited the cooperation of various departments for helping save lives and said residents who are asked to leave should do so immediately.
“This is a very stressful time,” said Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks. “Many of our first responders haven’t slept and throughout the state of California, there are fires so there isn’t as much support as we need. If you have a mandatory evacuation, leave. We don’t want any tragedies, we don’t want any deaths, we don’t want any injuries so please be safe out there.”
Corey Rose, Assistant Chief with the Los Angeles Fire Department said agencies like Ventura County Fire, Cal Fire, Ventura and Los Angeles Sheriff’s Departments and LAPD are working well together to reach residents who need to be evacuated.
“It’s been a long night and I just want to thank the community for being so resilient and listening to the evacuation orders,” he said. “I know it’s never easy to do that.”
To sign up for City of Malibu Emergency Alerts by text and email, visit www.MalibuCity.org/News (scroll down to Alert Center, select “Emergencies”).
To sign up for City of Malibu Disaster Notifications, visit www.MalibuCity.org/DisasterNotifications.