Brush fire breaks out in Los Angeles

Brush fire breaks out in Los Angeles

A new wildfire in Los Angeles near the Getty Museum has prompted officials to shut down the 405 freeway completely and evacuate areas of Bel Air in which homes are already burning.

The fire was reported just before 5 a.m. Wednesday.

Shortly before 7 a.m., the California Highway Patrol closed the entire 405 Freeway between the Ventura (101) Freeway and the Santa Monica (10) Freeway, along with on-ramps and off-ramps and freeway transition roads in the affected area.

Mayor Eric Garcetti said evacuation orders were affecting about 150,000 residents, but a Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman put the number at around 120,000. Dubbed the "Skirball Fire," this fast-moving blaze erupted, consuming at least 50 acres in fire.

Southern California is suffering an outbreak of large wildfires, thanks in part to strong Santa Ana winds and dry conditions that are expected to persist through most of the week.

"It's a very hard moment, but we will get through this", Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said on Tuesday, the New York Post reported. There is now a mandatory evacuation zone for residents on either side of the 405 freeway, map is below.

LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas warned that the battle was likely to continue until at least Friday. Fixed-wing aircraft are unable to fly and gusts of up to 45 miles per hour are being felt, LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas said.

The 210 interchange with the Ronald Reagan (118) Freeway was also closed.

Mandatory evacuations were ordered in Kagel Canyon and some other nearby areas.

About 105 patients were voluntarily evacuated from Mountain View Convalescent Center in Sylmar.

The extent of the fires was captured on video as commuters drove along a freeway on Wednesday.

Most people living in the hills of Los Angeles knew what to do, she said, but it was an especially trying time for people new to the area. Needless to say, the Skirball Center will remain closed as well.

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