- Wildfires are blazing throughout Southern California, prompting the state to suspend hours of service rules for truckers assisting with clearing debris and close parts of State Route 150 and State Route 33, along with many city and county roads, according to various reports.
- The amount of acreage burned in the California wildfires currently ranges 60,000-100,000 acres, Overdrive and CNN reported Wednesday. A curfew running from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. has been enacted in the City of Ventura.
- High Santa Ana winds and unusually dry conditions — humidity is estimated at less than 10% — are behind the various areas of blaze. Red flag warnings will be in effect through Saturday night, 24 hours later than originally predicted. Residents from neighborhoods of all types are being forced to evacuate.
The fires in California could have a major impact on peak season logistics, at least within the state.
Weather is often the weakest link of the supply chain. In 2016, cargo was stranded as fire blocked the route between Los Angeles and Las Vegas, while more recently, hurricanes have caused the most significant disruption, with convoys of trucks loaded with rebuilding necessities deployed from Lowe's and Home Depot as quickly as possible.
Now California is enduring a weather disaster that could significantly impact holiday deliveries.
“We’re watching the wildfires in Southern California closely and operating where it’s safe for our employees, " Troy Cooper, Chief Operating Officer of XPO Logistics told Supply Chain Dive. "Some freight may be delayed by a day or two, and we’re rerouting as needed for our customers."
The California Department of Transportation is reporting closures on main highways in both Los Angeles and Ventura counties, meaning transport trucks will not be moving any time soon.
"In L.A., Eastbound AND westbound Foothill Freeway (I-210) Sunland Boulevard, Wheatland Avenue, Osborne Street and Paxton Street off-ramps remain closed, as well as the Northbound San Diego Freeway (I-405) Moraga Drive, Getty Center Drive and Skirball Center Drive off-ramps are closed," Yessica Jovel of the Public Affairs Department of the California Department of Transportation told Supply Chain Dive.
In Ventura County, Jovel reported that "State Route 150 from Santa Ana Road in Ventura to Casitas Pass Road (State Route 192) near Carpinteria and State Route 150 from Reeves Road in Ojai to Stonegate Road in Santa Paula are also closed."
She continues, "Any closure of a major travel artery slows down goods movement and when you consider evacuation orders that are in place and are changing at a moment’s notice, we recommend that motorists who do not need to travel through fire-affected areas avoid doing so."