Wildfire burning near the Getty Center in Los Angeles

Map showing the location of the Skirball Fire that started early Wednesday morning in Los Angeles. Click to enlarge

Map showing the location of the Skirball Fire that started early Wednesday morning in Los Angeles. Click to enlarge

As massive fires rage to the north and east of Los Angeles, a brush fire has broken out east of the 405 freeway near homes and cultural institutions.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti declared a local state of emergency after the blaze almost tripled in size to 125 acres, destroying at least four homes. It began at 3:43 a.m. PT Monday, the Los Angeles County Fire Department said.

According to its website, the museum was closed on December 5 and December 6 "to protect the collections from smoke from fires in the region", but as of now, the art inside is staying put.

"We also can look for hotspots, " Terrazas said.

"These are the kind of conditions that keep public safety officials up at night", said Janet Upton, deputy director of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, known as Cal Fire.

As of 8 a.m., the 405 freeway was closed from the 101 to the 10, and Sunset Blvd.is also closed near the 405. "There's nothing you can do except get out".

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The state is now closing portions of the highway, according to the Los Angeles Times. The only fire in which there was any containment was the Rye, at 5%. Officials said the fire has destroyed at least 150 buildings, including an evacuated mental health facility.

"If a circuit is turned off, then it will not be re-energized until wind speeds have been reduced and the circuit has been assessed, which may include a physical inspection", the statement said. The Santa Anas are strong, dry winds that high-pressure systems push from east to west, from the mountains and desert areas down into the Los Angeles area. The air throughout the gallery is filtered by a system that forces it out, rather than a filtration method which would bring air in.

The wildfires have so far scorched 65,000 acres of land in southern California and forced tens of thousands of people from their homes. Classes were canceled at all schools in the Ventura Unified School District on Wednesday.

"We are still in the middle of an aggressive and active firefight on the ground", said Robert Welsbie, spokesman for the Ventura Fire Department.

State fire director Ken Pimlott said winds that eased in the afternoon could return with gusts up to 80mph on Thursday that would make it impossible to fight the fire.

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