The biggest and most destructive of several wildfires burning in Southern California has scorched more than 101 square miles.
State fire authorities say the fire burning in Ventura County about 60 miles northwest of Los Angeles is also considered a threat to 12,000 structures Wednesday. Dozens of homes have burned since the fire erupted Monday amid fierce Santa Ana winds.
A new fire burning among ridges and canyons on the west side of Los Angeles has also burned several homes while snarling morning commuter traffic. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti says at least four and possibly six homes have been destroyed by a wildfire in the city's Bel Air area. The fire erupted before dawn Wednesday in Sepulveda Pass, a major commuter route between the west side of Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley to the north. The fire burned up hillsides on the east side of the pass into expensive neighborhoods that are now under evacuation orders. The mayor says the fire is now 150 acres with zero containment. Some 500 firefighters are battling the fire along with water-dropping helicopters and airplanes laying down streams of fire retardant. The dangerous Santa Ana winds that have fanned fires across Southern California this week have diminished over the new LA fire but conditions are very dry, with just 9 percent relative humidity.