Several Small Vegetation Fires Raise Community Concerns

Malibu and its immediate surroundings have been hit by several fires over the past few weeks, including three over the course of the weekend. The largest of these lasted for several hours and ended up burning seven acres.

According to information provided by Battalion Chief Anthony Williams with the Los Angeles County Fire Department at the Monday, May 22 city council meeting, nine vegetation fires have burned in the battalion area in and around Malibu in the past two weeks; seven of those have been due to what he referred to as “weed whips” (also known as weed whackers or weed trimmers).

Williams specified that certain types of trimmers, specifically those with metal blades, are more likely to spark fires, but also wanted to continue encouraging residents to continue with brush clearance.

“We don’t want to, per se, kill the messenger, and say, ‘don’t do the weed abatement,’ but that’s an adjustment,” Williams said.

KBU News reported a small grass fire was sparked when a car went over the edge of Decker Canyon Road on Sunday afternoon, with no serious injuries. A day earlier, KBU said, a patch of grass caught fire on Rambla Pacifico following a Southern California Edison pole fire.

Friday was the larger blaze, which burned for around two hours off Mulholland Highway near Kanan Dume Road right outside Malibu. 

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The blaze elicited a strong response from both Los Angeles County Fire and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department first responders and, with the help of air units, the fire was out before any structures were damaged. No injuries were reported in connection to that blaze. 

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