LAFD Battles Major Emergency Fire in Northridge

Monday, January 09, 2006 |

On Monday, January 9, 2006 at 3:51 PM, twenty-eight Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, nine LAFD Rescue Ambulances, two Arson Units, one Urban Search and Rescue Unit, one Rehab/Air Tender Unit, one Emergency Air Unit, one Hazardous Materials Task Force, one LAFD Helicopter, three EMS Battalion Captains, five Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams, and one Division Chief Officer Command Team, all under the direction of Assistant Chief Roderick Garcia responded to a Major Emergency Structure Fire at 19414 Londelius Street in Northridge.

Firefighters arrived quickly during a period of strong north winds to discover heavy smoke and fire showing from a modern one-story 100' x 150' industrial building of concrete tilt-up construction amidst a minimally or unseparated block-long row of similar structures.

A half-dozen workers had safely escaped the involved business,"Ideal 2000 Custom Cabinets", just prior to Firefighters arrival.

Firefighters commenced a fierce initial interior attack on intense fire within the cabinet manufacturing firm, only to be driven back by voluminous flames that fed on volatile contents that filled the structure.

Firefighters use handlines at the parapets. Photo by Orlando Ramos -

With the subsequent compromise of the lightweight roof, a swift and well-coordinated transition to defensive tactics brought Firefighters with handlines to the parapets of the immediately adjacent businesses (photo), while master streams were strategically placed to bring the volume of water necessary to attack the free-burning fire (video).

LAFD Helicopter serving as aerial reconnaissance and Command support. Photo by Orlando Ramos -

Because of the wind and concern for flying embers, an LAFD Helicopter with video telemetry and infrared imaging capability was assigned for aerial reconnaissance and Command support.

Winds kept large volumes of smoke at ground level. Photo by Orlando Ramos -

With turbulent winds forcing large volumes of smoke low to the ground, more than twenty persons from one business immediately to the south were calmly and temporarily evacuated by Firefighters to prevent injury.

A total of 187 LAFD personnel tenaciously battled the stubborn flames for one hour and seventeen minutes before confining the wind-swept fire entirely within the occupancy of origin (photo).

No civilian or Firefighter injuries were reported.

Fire damage has been estimated at $1,000,000 ($500,000 structure & $500,000 contents). The cause of this late afternoon blaze was categorized as electrical.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department


Gone said...

This daughter of a fire chief would like to finally get around to thanking you for the wonderful job you do here keeping us fully informed!

LAFD Media and Public Relations said...

Thank you for your kind words, and also for sharing your Father with his "other" family at the Fire Department.

Those who have not grown up in an FD family, with a parent routinely gone for 24 hours or more at a time (at least ten times a month and not always sure to come home) cannot always appreciate the challenges it places on a family.

Please know that we enjoy bringing you information via the LAFD blog, and have some great things planned for the future.

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Respectfully Yours in Safety and Service,

Brian Humphrey
Public Service Officer
Los Angeles Fire Department

Tony Batman said...

I was amazed at the training and professionalsim that your team has. am moving here for work from the east coast and without disrespection other Fire Deparrtments. I will say you and your department are far superior to those on the east coast of the United States... Bravo and good job, I tell everyone that will listen of what I saw in Northridge,CA that day.

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