PCH Evacuation Plan Has Major Problems, Pub Safety Commissioner Says

Written by on January 31, 2020

Malibu has a great new evacuation plan … but it’s just not going to work.

That’s the assessment from one Malibu public works commissioner … yesterday …

Doug Stewart made that assessment before a panel of 25 government officials … the city’s Disaster Council … as it met yesterday.

Stewart was looking at the  city’s plan to get Malibu residents out of Malibu during the next fire.

Stewart says the new evacuation plan relies on electric power not failing. 


“The concern about single points of failure are: these are the items that cause everything in the plan to fail to stop. And you can have the best plans but they single point of failure stops it from being executed, and that’s what we have here.”

You don’t need to be prompted to remember what prompted the evacuation planning … the fiasco on PCH during the Woolsey Fire.

The city and sheriff and C H P have come up with a complicated plan to send deputies out to traffic lights … to direct traffic east into Santa Monica … and to help vehciles coming down from Topanga or other canyons sort of merge on using the left turn medians..

But Doug Stewarr says these plans are not realistic … they would rely on dozens of deputies along PCH to keep traffic flowing.


“They are basically illusionary because they depend upon the sheriff’s department having a number .., a huge number … of deputies in place and well trained to execute those plans.

“And that’s not going to be possible in a short-term evacuation notice.”

That’s city public safety commissioner Doug Stewart …

The city’s disaster council heard his concerns … pretty much said we are going to be playing it by ear anyway … and adopted the plan.

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