Quick Notes on the SoCal Wildfires

Joel Fox

Editor and Co-Publisher of Fox and Hounds Daily


Mayor Eric Garcetti issued a local state of emergency on the Skirball Fire in the Sepulveda Pass section of West Los Angeles and the Creek Fire in the northern San Fernando Valley. One of the officials who oversees the implementation of the declaration is Deputy Mayor for Homeland Security and Public Safety for the City of Los Angeles Jeff Gorrell. Many know Gorrell as the former state assemblyman who represented sections of Ventura and Los Angeles counties.

Wall Street Journal Publisher and Fox media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s house was directly threatened by the Skirball Fire. Former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s residence is also in the “ready” area – not set for evacuation but residents are told to be ready if the evacuation order comes.

At the top of the peaks surrounding the Sepulveda Pass, the Getty Museum was closed because of concern for the art and the fire raging on the opposite side of the highway. Social media images appeared to show the Getty threatened by flames. However, Ron Hartwig, the Getty’s vice president of communications, said, “The safest place for the art is right here at the Getty.” Some will remember Hartwig served as campaign manager for former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan’s unsuccessful run for governor in 2002.

Also in the neighborhood of the Getty Museum overlooking the Sepulveda Pass is the area that Nicholas Berggruen, he of the Think Long Committee for California, intends to build his Berggruen Institute think tank campus.

The Sepulveda Pass, the most congested roadway in the city of Los Angeles, was closed down part of the day because of the Skirball Fire. The strenuous commute through the pass (if you don’t get through going southbound before 6 a.m. you sit in traffic) is the target of Elon Musk’s Boring Co. tunnel to speed cars on “skates” under the pass at 130 miles per hour. A video of how the skate system would work can be found here.

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