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New Signs on Mulholland Promote Fire Prevention Hotline

A total of 100 signs in the Hollywood Hills and Santa Monica Mountains will be installed to promote the tip line.

Don't let Monday's cool morning air fool you, the peak of fire season is just around the corner.

In an effort to protect the Hollywood Hills, local leaders unveiled new signs at the Nancy Hoover Pohl Overlook in Fryman Canyon that promote a fire safety hotline.

So far 20 are posted in the hills. By the end of the week 100 signs will be posted from Griffith Park to Calabasas along the Mulholland Corridor.

"We are rich with open space," said Councilman Tom LaBonge at Monday's unveiling. "We've just got to maintain and protect it. Here in the urban areas sometimes urbanites do things they shouldn't do as well as some neighbors. I saw a local in Beachwood smoking and I had to turn my car around... you've got to protect the natural area."

In addition to the signs, postcards will be mailed to hillside residents about the tipline. The gist: if you see any suspicious activity, call the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority. The tipline is a co-dispatch between the MRCA and the city fire department, LaBonge explained.

The number to call is 310-456-7049.

"Immediate response is necessary," he said. "It's a real key thing that everyone is working together."

Los Angeles Fire Department Assistant Chief Andy Fox, who oversees coverage of the Santa Monica Mountains, said preparation for the peak season is underway.

"The last three days we've had the command staff of the Los Angeles Fire Department  driving these hills in preparation for a Bel-Air type of fire, a fast-moving, wind-driven Santa Ana-type fire," Fox said. "These fires can start in a variety of ways: downed power lines, an arsonist, someone smoking. Our message to you is, 'Please help us protect you' because back in 1961 we lost over 400 homes. Because of the good work of the men and women in the fire department, no one died in that fire, but today we have a lot more homes. Use good common sense  and protect yourself and your neighbor."

LaBonge also pointed out that he's noticing that more trees are snapping this year.

"Just going through Elysian Park this morning on my way to City Gall, two big branches just fell," he said. "[Remember] the wind that we had in November a year ago, that was a challenge so we have to be prepared." 

Scott Zwartz October 09, 2012 at 05:55 PM
You know what might actually be a better idea? Not stealing $100 Million from the fire department. It is outrageous how LaBonge, who downized FS 82 by 75%, who removed one whole company from FS 35, and who voted to steal $200 M from the LAFD can have the nerve to even show his face in public, let alone pretend his gives a hoot about firemen and paramedics. Have LaBonge and Garcetti ever found a billionaire developer who didn't merit more tax dollars or did they ever reject a reason to down size the LAFD? Since 2005 we ahve known that teh City's lies ab out its fire and paamedic responses time were lies and that the 911 system was antiquated, yet Garcetti and LaBonge let the response times become worse and worse and worse which led to more and more people dying. Now we are supposed to rejoice because they put up signs!!! Look at the LAFD maps and you'll that much of the time, there is no one in the local fire stations to respond to calls.
Scott Zwartz October 09, 2012 at 05:57 PM
""The last three days we've had the command staff of the Los Angeles Fire Department driving these hills in preparation for a Bel-Air type of fire, a fast-moving, wind-driven Santa Ana-type fire," Fox said. "These fires can start in a variety of ways: downed power lines, an arsonist, someone smoking. Our message to you is, 'Please help us protect you' because back in 1961 we lost over 400 homes. Because of the good work of the men and women in the fire department, no one died in that fire, but today we have a lot more homes. Use good common sense and protect yourself and your neighbor." Common sense says, don't downsize fire stations and don't cut millions of dollars from the LAFD budget and don't blame firemen who expect the pensions which LaBonge promised would be ready when they retire.
Elke Heitmeyer October 11, 2012 at 03:19 AM
MRCA does a lot to prevent those fires in the first place with brush clearance in the hills and rangers stationed throughout. I think those signs will also just add to the public's awareness and carefulness.

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