Winds Fuel Storm of Embers When Palm Tree Catches on Fire

Embers scattered in the street ignited a few small rubbish fires in the Mid-City area

The Christmas morning holiday lights display on a street west of downtown Los Angeles included a storm of windblown embers and burning fronds from a palm tree that caught on fire.

The tree lit up like a tall matchstick after it struck power lines at the intersection of Venice Boulevard and South Mansfield Avenue in the Mid-City area of Los Angeles. Several gusts during a night of powerful winds sent a storm of embers into the street and across nearby properties, sparking a few rubbish fires.

The tree fire was extinguished in about 20 minutes. No injuries were reported.

Sustained winds of 20 mph and more were reported overnight in Los Angeles, leading to power outages, downed trees and debris scattered in streets. Gusts between 30 and 50 mph were recorded across the region with peak gusts of about 75 mph in mountains north of LA.

Calmer conditions are expected by Thursday afternoon.

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