California wildfires: thousands flee as fire reaches L.A.
Mandatory evacuation ordered for parts of Bel Air as brush fires rage
More than 27,000 people fled their homes in California today as out-of-control wildfires swept through Ventura County and threatened Los Angeles.
An uncontained 50-acre fire raged near the Getty Center art institute and moved toward the University of California, Los Angeles, while a mandatory evacuation order was issued for parts of Bel Air, one of LA’s wealthiest neighborhoods.
CNN says “wind-whipped” wildfires threatened further damage after burning more than 65,000 acres, torching buildings and forcing tens of thousands of people to flee.
The blaze is racing towards the Pacific Ocean, adds the Los Angeles Times.
State governor Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency as around 1,100 firefighters battle the wildfire.
The fire began late on Monday near Santa Paula, a city about 60 miles northwest of LA. According to The San Diego Union-Tribune, the blaze “caught Californians off guard” as the region’s wildfire season “typically ends in September”.