Palisades Burning

High-powered Scripps Oceanographic cameras captured the Palisades fire scene in its early stages from 69 Bravo Helispot. LA County Fire Hawks double-dipped 65,000 gallons of water in less than 5 hours. An automated refill system drawing from West Basin Municipal Water District was activated.

The third brush fire in as many months in Pacific Palisades began around 10:30 a.m. on Monday, October 21, breaking out near the 800 block of North Palisades Drive. It threatened 628 homes and more than 600 residents were evacuated but returned home that day.

Around 8 p.m. that night, the blaze was 30 percent contained. According to LAFD, firefighters, anticipating #RedFlag Fire Weather conditions, continued to work through the night in extremely steep terrain to ensure flareups did not move past the control line.

A LAFD update as of 9 a.m., Wednesday, October 23, reported that “overnight, northerly winds flared hotspots in the 45-acre debris pile of the #PalisadesFire, seen glowing white in a video ( from a #FIRIS infrared fixed-wing aircraft flight taken at 9:40 p.m., Tuesday. Firefighters continued to aggressively extinguish hot spots in the rugged terrain before the anticipated arrival of Santa Ana winds on Thursday.

“Firefighters held containment lines as northerly wind gusts up to 45 mph blew embers in a southwest direction across Palisades Drive. They were assisted by helicopters who made five water drops on countless hotspots throughout the 45-acre fire footprint.

LA County Fire took over 65,000 gallons from 69 bravo in less than 5 hours. Approximately 295 personnel (all agencies) were assigned. Three first responders and one civilian were injured. Eight structures were damaged, but none were destroyed. The cause of the fire is under investigation.


The Los Angeles Fire Department encourages you to be prepared in the event of a brush fire. Residents living in wildfire prone areas should remain vigilant and familiarize themselves with the Ready, Set, Go! program:


Flavia Potenza

Flavia Potenza is executive editor of the Messenger Mountain News. She is also a founding member of the 40-year old Topanga Messenger that closed its doors in 2016. She can be reached at

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