Two homes destroyed, one damaged in PCH fire


A fire that started early Thursday morning at a vacant home just east of Duke’s Malibu on Pacific Coast Highway destroyed a three-story house and another home next door. A house on the other side of the home where the fire started was damaged.

All lanes of Pacific Coast Highway near the site were closed shortly after the fire began at 3 a.m. The westbound lanes were soon opened, but the eastbound lanes remained closed until approximately 7:30 a.m.

Nearly 60 firefighters were called to the scene. The fire was contained shortly before 5 a.m.

Firefighter Pat Fearon from Los Angeles County Fire Department Station 70 said the home where the fire started had no chance to be saved.

“It was fully engulfed,” said Fearon, who said firefighters could not enter the home because it was too dangerous, and the home’s floor was rotted.

The vacant home, located at 21106 Pacific Coast Highway, was built in 1920 and was one of the oldest standing houses in Malibu, according to public records. It has been on the market since July 24 last year. The original asking price was nearly $3 million. The price was reduced several times, most recently on June 16 to nearly $2.6 million.

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s arson investigators were called to the scene. The department’s bomb squad also made an appearance.

No cause of the fire has been determined. Capt. Bob Goldman from Station 70 told Channel 7 News the fire looked “very suspicious.”

Six people were evacuated from two of the homes. No injuries were reported. Firefighter Dave Moss stepped on a nail.

“He’s going to be fine,” Fearon said. “But we were all giving him a hard time.”