City Civil Engineer Fatality in North Hollywood

Monday, February 21, 2005 |

On Sunday, February 21, 2005 at 2237 (10:37 PM PST) five Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, one Assistant Chief and two Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams, along with two Swift Water Rescue Teams, two LAFD Helicopters, three LAFD Rescue Ambulances, and two EMS Captains, under the direction of Deputy Chief Mario D. Rueda, known as the “Tujunga IC”, responded to the 8000 block of Tujunga Avenue in Sun Valley, the location of a large sink hole measuring approximately 30 feet deep.

A City Civil Engineer was reported to be monitoring crews working below when the ground became unstable, pitching him and a nearby concrete barrier into the sizeable aperture.

LAFD Helicopter Fire 6 was summoned to assist in locating the victim, but a helicopter recovery of the man’s body proved not feasible due to rain, wind and the presence of high-tension wires. Ground-based Firefighters, utilizing rescue ropes and a 35’ extension ladder, were able to recover the man’s remains at approximately 0200 (2:00 AM PST). No other injuries were incurred.

CAL-OSHA and City of Los Angeles officials will be conducting a formal investigation.


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