Firefighters work near Getty Center in Los Angeles, the United States, Oct. 28, 2019. Thousands of residents were forced to evacuate their homes after a fast-moving wildfire erupted early Monday morning near the famous Getty Center in Los Angeles in the western U.S. state of California. (Photo by Qian Weizhong/Xinhua)
LOS ANGELES, Oct. 28 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of residents were forced to evacuate their homes after a fast-moving wildfire erupted early Monday morning near the famous Getty Center in Los Angeles in the western U.S. state of California.
The blaze, dubbed Getty Fire, broke out around 2 a.m. local time. It has scorched more than 500 acres (2 square km) in several hours.
There are over 10,000 residential and commercial structures in the mandatory evacuation zones, according to a morning update of the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD).
"This is a very dynamic fire that is moving in a westward direction driven by high winds," the agency warned.
"I'm signing an emergency declaration immediately for the Getty Fire to help bring more resources to support our LAFD in fighting this fire," Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced in the morning.
Garcetti urged people to leave immediately if they are under mandatory evacuation orders. The mayor's parents were also reportedly evacuated.
NBA star LeBron James said on Twitter that he and his family had to evacuate their home in the dark.
"Had to emergency evacuate my house and I've been driving around with my family trying to get rooms. No luck so far!" wrote the Los Angeles Lakers star.
"Man these LA fires aren't no joke," he said, praying for all the families in the area that could be affected by the blaze.
Southbound lanes of one of the busiest freeways in Los Angeles, the 405 freeway, are forced to be closed.
Some local schools in the area will be closed on Monday due to the Getty Fire, according to Los Angeles Unified School District.