South­ern Cal­i­for­nia:

The Mercury News - - Front Page - By Brenda Gaz­zar South­ern Cal­i­for­nia News Group

The mayor of Thou­sand Oaks says that three-quar­ters of his city is un­der fire evac­u­a­tion or­ders.

A wind-whipped fire rag­ing through parts of Ven­tura and Los An­ge­les coun­ties burned through 35,000 acres by Fri­day evening, en­gulf­ing scores of homes and other struc­tures as weary fire crews scram­bled to con­tain the dam­age and au­thor­i­ties urged tens of thou­sands of res­i­dents to flee the en­croach­ing threat.

The Woolsey fire, which broke out near the for­mer Rock­et­dyne site south of Simi Val­ley on Thurs­day, burned out of con­trol through the day, with zero con­tain­ment, and prompted wave after wave of evac­u­a­tions from por­tions of Agoura Hills, West­lake Vil­lage and Cal­abasas to the city of Mal­ibu.

Broad­cast re­ports showed flames en­gulf­ing hill­sides, sev­eral homes and other struc­tures as the fire marched to­ward the sea. Among the roads and high­ways snarled by traf­fic from evac­uees was Pa­cific Coast High­way, which saw res­i­dents from Mal­ibu head south to­ward safety.

At least 150 homes in South­ern Cal­i­for­nia were torched by the fire, The As­so­ci­ated Press re­ported, among them man­sions in Mal­ibu.

Thou­sand Oaks Mayor Andy Fox said that three­quar­ters of his city is un­der fire evac­u­a­tion or­ders and that most likely in­cludes peo­ple af­fected by the deadly bar shoot­ing this week, AP also re­ported.

By early Fri­day evening, the flames had pushed into the San Fer­nando Val­ley, threat­en­ing the West Hills neigh­bor­hood, with evac­u­a­tion or­ders put into place.

While the er­ratic winds be­gan to sub­side as the day wore on, weather fore­cast­ers ex­pected them to con­tinue a few more days and even pick up in in­ten­sity. An­other wind event is ex­pected in the com­ing days, Los An­ge­les County Fire Chief Daryl Osby said dur­ing

an af­ter­noon news con­fer­ence Fri­day in Thou­sand Oaks.

Once there is a lull in the winds, “then we can start get­ting a good an­chor and foothold and at­tack this fire,” said Ven­tura County Fire Capt. Brian McGrath.

The num­ber of peo­ple un­der evac­u­a­tion or­ders was stag­ger­ing: an es­ti­mated 250,000 peo­ple by Fri­day evening.

Among those flee­ing the fire were a num­ber of celebri­ties, in­clud­ing Lady Gaga, Kim Kar­dashian West, Scott Baio, Rainn Wil­son and Guillermo del Toro. Some, like del Toro and Cait­lyn Jen­ner, did not know the fate of their homes, but the wind-driven wild­fire has de­stroyed the home of “Dr. Strange” di­rec­tor Scott Der­rick­son and the his­toric Para­mount Ranch where shows like HBO’s “West­world” and “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Wo­man” were filmed, ac­cord­ing to the AP.

The rag­ing fire also sent plumes of bil­low­ing smoke high up into the sun­drenched sky.

About 78,000 peo­ple were evac­u­ated from Ven­tura County alone from more than 21,000 homes and busi­nesses, ac­cord­ing

to Ven­tura County sher­iff’s of­fi­cials.

“We no­ti­fied every­one in Thou­sand Oaks from the Los An­ge­les County Line to High­way 23 south along High­way 101, Lake Sher­wood, and all of the canyon ar­eas to the beach,” said Sgt. Eric Buschow with the Ven­tura County Sher­rif’s Of­fice.

Mean­while, Los An­ge­les County Sher­iff’s De­part­ment of­fi­cials told res­i­dents to evac­u­ate from Hid­den Hills, Mal­ibu, Mal­ibu Canyon area east to Topanga Canyon Road — in­clud­ing all ar­eas south or west through the Ven­tura County coast.

Res­i­dents in un­in­cor­po­rated Monte Nido and Topanga Canyon were also asked to evac­u­ate north to­ward the Chatsworth or San Fer­nando area.

By midafter­noon Fri­day, the Cal­i­for­nia High­way Pa­trol had con­verted all four lanes of the Pa­cific Coast High­way to one-way, south­bound traf­fic from Mal­ibu Canyon Road to the 10 Free­way in Santa Mon­ica for those flee­ing the fire in the Mal­ibu area, of­fi­cials said.

Some evac­uees were seen at Zuma Beach with gas masks watch­ing the Woolsey fire burn. Sev­eral lla­mas

evac­u­ated from the fire were tied to a life­guard tower at the beach.

Those evac­u­at­ing were asked to bring their iden­ti­fi­ca­tion, their medicine and any im­por­tant doc­u­ments, such as birth and mar­riage cer­tifi­cates, along with sup­plies, a change of clothes and toi­letries.

Evac­u­ated res­i­dents in need of shel­ter were asked to go to Pierce Col­lege in Wood­land Hills or Pal­isades Char­ter High School in Pa­cific Pal­isades, of­fi­cials said. Taft High School in Wood­land Hills was “cur­rently full.”

Mean­while, Ven­tura County Fire De­part­ment or­dered a manda­tory evac­u­a­tion Fri­day for all res­i­dents and busi­nesses along Wood Ranch Park­way, east to First Street and Long Canyon Road to Val­ley Gate Road.

Fire of­fi­cials grap­pled to get some kind of con­tain­ment amid high winds.

An­other fire, the Hill fire, which started in Ven­tura County, had burned about 6,100 acres as of Fri­day morn­ing and re­sulted in more than 17,000 peo­ple were or­dered to leave.

Fire­fight­ers bat­tle flames in the Oak For­est Mo­bile Es­tates area of West­lake Vil­lage on Fri­day af­ter­noon.

Fire­fight­ers bat­tling the Woolsey fire at­tempt to ex­tin­guish a blaze at a home on Canyon Ridge Drive in West­lake Vil­lage on Fri­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.