The brush fire that raced up Sepulveda Pass and into ritzy Bel Air last week, stopping traffic on the 405 freeway and destroying six homes, was started by an illegal cooking fire, investigators with the Los Angeles Fire Department have concluded.
The Skirball Fire was ignited at an encampment in the brush along Sepulveda Boulevard, where the street passes under Interstate 405, LAFD officials said in a statement Tuesday, even as dozens of firefighters continued working to fence in the flames.
The fire has blackened more than 400 acres since it broke out nearly a week ago. It was 85 percent contained Tuesday.
Los Angeles City Councilman Mike Bonin said homeless people who were being moved around by increasingly restrictive city policies were making improvised homes in the city’s fire-vulnerable canyons.
“We can't continue to allow encampments on our sidewalks. We can't go let them in our parks and the canyons,” Bonin said. “We keep moving encampments around from place to place.”