The northbound Getty Center offramp of the 405 Freeway has been ordered shut down at the height of rush hour as emergency crews scramble to fight a growing brushfire in the Sepulveda Pass, just east of the freeway.
The California Highway Patrol has also closed Sepulveda Boulevard between Moraga Drive and the Getty Center. The center itself was closed and evacuated earlier as a precaution.
Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Police Department has requested the closure of the northbound 405 Freeway between the 10 and 101 freeways, but it was not clear whether the CHP would close it.
More than 100 firefighters were battling the blaze as it climbed from the 405 up toward Moraga Drive, Los Angeles Fire Capt. Jamie Moore said. Homes are nestled along a cul-de-sac there in the hills of Bel-Air.
Traffic is largely at a standstill on the 405, but officials have asked drivers to exit as soon as possible. Drivers planning to take the 405 or Sepulveda Boulevard should find an alternate route or wait, CHP spokeswoman Charmaine Fajardo said.
“This is a good time for people to work late, to go to dinner, to do something else besides get on that freeway,” Fajardo said. “Stay away from the freeway.”
Drivers who are on the freeway could be stuck for a while, but aren’t currently in danger, Fajardo said.
"It probably should take 20 minutes," said Stacie Zara, 37, a driver who was turning right onto Sepulveda from Cashmere Street. She was headed home to Sherman Oaks from work in Brentwood. "It's taken two hours."
Near the Skirball Cultural Center on Sepulveda, southbound traffic was at a standstill. Traffic headed north moved more quickly.
The closure comes 24 hours before the scheduled shutdown of the northbound 405 Freeway in preparation for Carmageddon II. The shutdown was scheduled to begin about 11 p.m. Saturday and last until 9 a.m. Sunday between Getty Center Drive and Ventura Boulevard.
Storified by LA Times - LA NOW · Fri, Sep 14 2012 18:05:49
Fire update: Getty Center Drive & Sepulveda Rd. (on the Sepulveda Pass) still closed, but Super Scoopers are now dumping water on the 8-10 acre fire. Stuck in traffic? Taking pictures? Tweet us @KPCC. http://www.scpr.org/blogs/news/2012/09/14/9990/brush-fire-sepulveda-pass-getty-center-temporarily/KPCC
405 fwy travel: if u r trying 2 network w/other drivers re alt routes around traffic backup, search tweets re #SepulvedaFire + "Getty fire"winecountrydog
In the worst traffic and the fire behind me. Avoid the 405 if you can!!!!!! Roads are closed and traffics a http://instagr.am/p/PkxyNpRbYm/Kara Hess
Yo! Twitter peeps!! #Fire near Sepulveda of cramp on 405. Tons of #traffic off of Ventura Blvd from Cahuenga West to Coldwater Cyn.Michelle C. Bonilla
Pic of Traffic Map from Sepulveda Pass please avoid the area if you can http://twitpic.com/aumkxchurricanefreak
Stuck in traffic on 405 due to fire! 8 miles 1.25 hours! Beautiful!Darien Wright
To clarify, 405 is open in both directions but traffic very slow due to smoke and spectator slowing. Only Getty off closed.CHP Southern Div.
Live feed says Sepulveda is closed between the 10 and 101 and the traffic is being diverted to the 405. http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local/Sepulveda-Pass-Brush-Fire-169841396.htmlJanna O'Shea
RT @Venice311: @LAFDtalk @lafd @StrikelikeViper: @knx1070 @Venice311 405, right now. Traffic is going to be rough! http://pic.twitter.com/IECfLM08SeasonOfBytes
#SepulvedaFire shooting clouds of white smoke over Friday rush hour traffic on 405http://4.nbcla.com/R1jDpt #LiveVideoNBC Los Angeles
Crazy fire on Sepulveda Pass makes Friday traffic that much worse #LA #405 http://pic.twitter.com/b7o3MrFfKristy Gonzalez
LA is on fire again. I may die in 405 related traffic. #latechildpickup #SOoverLAAdam Woods
-- Laura J. Nelson, Wesley Lowery and Andrew Khouri
Photo: Firefighters attack blaze. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times