The Woolsey Fire broke out in Chatsworth on the afternoon of Thursday, November 8, 2018 and reached Malibu early Friday morning. A mandatory evacuation was issued for all of Malibu on Friday, November 9, 2018.
100% containment was reached as of November 22, 2018, with 96,949 acres burned throughout the entire fire zone.
View pre- and post-fire comparisons on a Map From NICB Geospatial Intelligence Center.
County Supervisors Vote To Expedite the Woolsey Fire Recovery Process
On Tuesday, December 4, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved two emergency motions, authored by Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, in order to expedite the Woolsey Fire recovery process:
- The first motion allows LA County Public Works to supplement and extend professional and emergency contracts to repair and reconstruct public roads, bridges, drains, flood control facilities, and water supply and sewer facilities; as well as conduct outreach and provide advice about debris flow to residents and businesses.
The motion also allows Public Works to waive water bill charges and reduce excessive water use charges to the normal rate during the Woolsey Fire billing cycle for customers with homes or businesses that were destroyed or substantially damaged.
- In a related motion approved by the Board, the Supervisors adopted an ordinance, effective immediately, which advances the process to assist property owners in removing fire debris. Debris and ash caused by the Woolsey Fire may contain hazardous substances, so it is important to facilitate removal of this debris in order to protect public safety.
“Today we are taking several steps in order to ensure that the Woolsey Fire recovery effort moves forward as quickly and safely as possible,” said LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl who represents communities damaged by the Woolsey Fire. “Hundreds of residents have lost their homes. Many more have had their homes damaged and their lives seriously disrupted. Our work now is designed to make the work of the recovery move as smoothly and quickly as possible.”
Public Works was also directed to report back to the Board of Supervisors every two weeks on the status of the recovery effort.
Areas of Malibu continue to have smoke in the air, which may be unhealthy. Older adults, young children, pregnant women, and people with heart diseases or lung diseases (such as asthma) may be especially sensitive to health risks from wildfire smoke.
If you smell smoke or see ash due to a wildfire, limit your exposure by remaining indoors with windows and doors closed, or seek alternate shelter and avoid vigorous physical activity.
Do not rely on dust masks for protection. Paper “dust masks” can block large particles, such as sawdust, but do not protect your lungs from the small particles or gases in wildfire smoke. Disposable respirators such as N-95 or P-100 respirators can offer some protection if they are worn properly and have a tight fit.
For additional information, visit the South Coast Air Quality Management District website at AQMD.gov.
Most roads within the city limits are now open; however, some intermittent road closures may be required as Los Angeles County Dept of Public Work, City of Malibu, and various utilities continue to repair damaged infrastructure.
Dr. Ben Drati, Superintendent of Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD) issued a statement on November 20 regarding the plan for reopening of Malibu schools. As of Tuesday, December 4, Webster Elementary and Point Dume Marine Science Schools had reopened. In an update statement on November 28, Dr. Drati indicated that Juan Cabrillo Elementary School is tentatively scheduled to open on Monday, December 10, and Malibu High School will open on Tuesday, December 11.
Malibu Creek State Park, Solstice Canyon, Upper Solstice Canyon, and Castro Crest will remain closed to all pedestrian and vehicle traffic for an undetermined period. Many known and unknown hazards exist following an intense fire, including fire-weakened or dead trees that can fall without warning, burned out stumps creating holes under trails, damage to parking areas and roads, and damaged or destroyed structures.