The blaze, known as the Getty Fire, erupted before dawn on Monday on the west side of Sepulveda Pass, where Interstate 405 passes through the Santa Monica Mountains, and roared up slopes into wealthy neighborhoods, threatening thousands of homes.
On a website set up for updates about the blaze, the Los Angeles Fire Department said the "very dynamic fire" is moving in a westward direction and has grown to over 500 acres.
Mandatory evacuations have been issued from the areas from Temescal Canyon Road to Sunset Boulevard, and from Mulholland Drive to the north and the 405 Freeway to the east. About 10,000 homes and businesses are in areas subject to mandatory evacuation orders.
"If you're in the mandatory evacuation zone and you're still there watching this, you're an idiot. Get the hell out," L.A. City Councilman Paul Koretz said at a news conference. "It's way too dangerous."
Anyone with information on evacuation zones is asked to contact the LAFD's general public information number at (213) 978-3800.
Around 2,600 LADWP customers were without power due to the blaze, and utility Southern California Edison said it was considering shutting off power to more than 100,000 customers in Los Angeles County as a precaution due to the high winds in the area and the raging inferno, FOX11 reported.
Evacuation centers have been set up at the Westwood Recreation Center, Van Nuys / Sherman Oaks Recreation Center, Stoner Recreation Center, Palisades Recreation Center, and the Cheviot Hills Recreation Center.
Animal-friendly shelters are available at the West Valley Animal Shelter, West LA Animal Shelter, East Valley Animal Shelter and the Hanson Dam Rec Area for large pets.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said at a news briefing he has seen about five burned homes since the blaze began Monday on the city's west side.
Garcetti said the fire is believed to have grown over 500 acres, pushed by winds from 15-20 mph. The mayor added the fire was not caused by any homeless encampment or by anyone else who is unhoused.
Fire Department Capt. Erik Scott says about 3,300 homes are threatened in the Mountaingate and Mandeville Canyon areas but mandatory evacuation orders have expanded southwestward. LAPD Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas said he believes the number of destroyed homes will rise.
As daylight broke, airplanes dropping water and fire retardant were able to join the battle against the destructive wildfire.
Night-flying helicopters made water drops during predawn hours Monday and large aircraft started flying the area after the sun rose.
Two so-called "Super Scooper" turboprop airplanes that scoop up water from lakes and reservoirs have begun making drops, along with converted jets unleashing loads of bright pink retardant.
Mount St. Mary's University evacuated 450 students from its Chalon campus located near the Getty Center, while the University of California, Los Angeles in the city's Westwood section canceled classes — not because of any direct threat from the fire but because of road closings and evacuations affecting people on their way to the university.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.