California wildfires continue to spread, LA schools and 405 freeway shut down

Yesterday I wrote about the wildfires burning near Ventura California and in northern parts of LA County. The Santa Ana winds which have been driving the fires have not let up and the blaze continues to create chaos around Los Angeles. Today 54 LA schools were closed, along with UCLA. CNN reports that part of the 405 freeway, one of the major freeways linking LA and Orange County, has been shut down because of a new wildfire burning near a major art museum.

Police shut down I-405 — one of the nation’s busiest freeways — in both directions for nine miles after flames swept down the foothills toward the highway, near Sepulveda Pass and the Getty Center arts complex, as stunned motorists drove by before dawn.

UCLA, a few miles south of the fire, said it believed its campus was safe but canceled afternoon and evening classes, citing difficult traffic conditions…

Pre-dawn videos of the 150-acre blaze, dubbed the Skirball Fire because of its proximity to the Skirball Cultural Center, showed bright flames glowing ominously close to motorists. The fire was on the other side of the highway from both the Skirball and the Getty museum.

LA’s Mayor has issued a local state of emergency for the Skirball fire.

This clip shows what a portion of the 405 freeway looked like early this morning near the Getty:

This looks like the commute from hell:

And here’s a recent clip of the smoke rising from this fire:

In this clip, one of the residents of Bel Air talks about being asked to evacuate and not knowing if her home will be there when she returns.

One local NBC affiliate is reporting that the $30 million estate of Rupert Murdoch is burning:

Another home on fire in Bel Air:

None of these fires are currently contained (the Rye fire is 5% contained, the other three fires are 0%) which means this is going to continue to spread so long as the strong winds keeps fanning the flames.