- LeBron James and Arnold Schwarzenegger are among thousands of Los Angeles residents evacuating their homes due to a fire near the Getty Center.
- The fire broke out early Monday morning and has spread to over 600 acres. At least 13 structures have burned and another 10,000 are threatened.
- Santa Ana winds have fueled the fire’s westward spread, aided by dry conditions across California.
- As the climate warms, California’s wildfire season is getting longer, and weather conditions that bring a high risk of wildfires are becoming more common.
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A fire that broke out near the Getty Center around 1:30 a.m. Monday morning has spread across more than 600 acres in Los Angeles.
The blaze, called the Getty Fire, has forced thousands to flee their homes, including LeBron James and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The flames led parts of the 405 freeway to close as they pushed westward, fueled by powerful Santa Ana winds.
The brush fire has already destroyed at least eight structures and damaged at least five. The blaze threatens another 10,000 structures. The fire was 0% contained as of Monday morning, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department, so officials expect to see more damage as the day progresses.
“Had to emergency evacuate my house and I’ve been driving around with my family trying to get rooms,” James said said on Twitter at 3:53 a.m. local time. “No luck so far!” Eighteen minutes later, however, he said they’d found accommodations.
—LeBron James (@KingJames) October 28, 2019
In a press conference, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti warned residents to “get out when we say get out,” and never to fight flames with garden hoses.
“The only thing you cannot replace is you and your family,” he added.
Schwarzenegger echoed the warning, tweeting: “If you are in an evacuation zone, don’t screw around. Get out.”
Affected residents can find shelter at the Westwood Recreation Center, the Van Nuys/Sherman Oaks Recreation Center, the Stoner Recreation Center, the Palisades Recreation Center, and the Cheviot Hills Recreation Center. The West Valley and West LA animal shelters are also open to pets, and the Hansen Dam Rec Area is accepting large animals.
Though flames are visible from the Getty Center, the museum itself is safe for now.
“Many have asked about the art — it is protected by state-of-the-art technology,” the museum said in a statement on Twitter. “The safest place for the art and library collections is inside.”
Santa Ana winds are spreading fires quickly across California