Fire Erupts in Los Feliz Highrise Condominium

Friday, September 01, 2006 |

Image by benhigh. Courtesy of Click for more...On Friday, September 1, 2006 at 5:23 PM, twenty Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, eleven LAFD Rescue Ambulances, one Arson Unit, one Urban Search and Rescue Company, one Rehab Air Tender, one Emergency Air Unit, one Hazardous Materials Squad, two LAFD Helicopters, four EMS Battalion Captains, six Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams and one Division Chief Officer Command Team under the direction of Assistant Chief Richard Warford responded to a Major Emergency Residential Highrise Structure Fire at 4455 Los Feliz Boulevard in Los Feliz.

Firefighters arrived quickly to discover flames showing from two windows of a ninth-floor condominium in the west tower of the Los Feliz Towers, a thirteen story non-sprinklered residential highrise.

The LAFD Highrise Incident Command System was immediately initiated, as the lobby and elevators were secured and stairwells identified for Firefighter access and occupant egress.

A pair of LAFD Helicopters, serving separate roles of Command Reconnaisance and Airborne Engine Company were instantly dispatched to the scene, joining more than 150 LAFD personnel already assigned to the incident.

The calm and orderly self-evacuation of many residents and their guests was taking place unabated as teams of Firefighters ascended the stairwells to discover and assist many of the building's more fragile occupants with sheltering in place on floors far below or distant from the fire.

According to witnesses, an oxygen using 79 year-old female resident had started a fire by smoking. Her quick thinking 60 year-old female caretaker was, with considerable effort, able to drag her uninjured to the interior hallway as the fire raced through the apartment behind them.

Unable to take her any further, the caretaker descended the stairs to meet first-arriving Firefighters, who rescued the woman and guided several of her neighbors to safety.

A safe refuge and casualty collection point for many residents was soon established on the fourth floor, as Fire Attack Teams did swift battle with the intense fire in the one ninth floor unit.

Though heat and smoke scarred the outside of the building, the fire was confined to the 1,100 square-foot condominium of origin and extinguished in just thirty-one minutes.

The woman and her caretaker were examined by LAFD Paramedics before declining hospital transportation. Several residents were quickly evaluated for non-life threatening medical complaints on the fourth floor, as well as at a Triage Area which had been established outside the building.

A 70 year-old male living directly across the interior hall from unit of fire origin complained of smoke inhalation, and was transported to Hollywood Presbyterian/Queen of Angels Hospital in fair condition. No Firefighter injuries were reported.

Sadly, one pet dog perished in the flames.

Loss from the fire is estimated at $250,000 ($150,000 structure & $100,000 contents).

(video) (Images) (cgm images) (cgm slideshow) (b/la post with images)

image courtesy of benhigh at

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

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Roonie said...

A dog died, oh god! :( That is so sad. Saddest piece of news of all.

Ashley said...

"A dog died, oh god! That is so sad. Saddest piece of news of all"

I simply can't believe that someone thinks a dog is more important than someone's home or the non-life threatening medical complaints that some of the residents suffered from.

I am speechless...

Anonymous said...

we just live a block away and we (me, my boyfriend and my dog) are saddened by the news of the dog perishing. our hearts go out to the pet owner who lost a companion (what an awful way to lose an animal). i'm sure we've greeted each other on the streets. we also hope the other residents will be fine and are glad no other lives were lost.

thanks to the firefighters who prevented the fire from spreading. we're all so grateful. thank you, thank you, thank you.

*a person who thinks someone's home is more important than a member of his/her family (pets included), is better off not talking.

redcup56 said...

Thanks to the LAFD members who confined the fire to the unit of origin and the fine job treating and assisting the victims.

Without the quick intervention, I'm sure the loss would have been a lot worse.

Keep up the good work, and stay safe.

Portland, OR

Anonymous said...

I simply can't believe that someone thinks a dog is more important than someone's home

Where did the person say a dog was more important than someone's home?

Answer: nowhere.

So stop putting words in other people's mouths.

LAFD Media and Public Relations said...


Thank you for taking the time to comment.

The loss of life, human or otherwise, as the result of fire, is rightful reason for sadness.

This is especially true when the cause of fire may be needless and preventable.

That much said, let us all gain from this sad incident by redoubling our efforts to prevent and protect *ourselves* from fire, so that human and animal lives, our property and the environment are not needless placed in harm's way.

We always welcome polite comments here of a variety of viewpoints, and remind you that whether they agree or disagree with our actions or endeavors, the emphasis must be on *polite* and the *focused* on the topic at hand.

If you have a strong opinion on the thread in question, please share your opinion without attacking others or using vulgarities.

We want to hear about the strengths of your viewpoint as it relates to particular public safety matters, and not impolite attacks on the perceived weakenesses of another's viewpoint.

Please persuade us with your passion, rather than your anger.

If you want to comment about the LAFD without rules or moderation, please click here

Respectfully Yours in Safety and Service,

Brian Humphrey
Public Service Officer
Los Angeles Fire Department

Matthew Foxer said...

I remember when I was a kid I always saw that apartment room. All black and it wasn't remodeled till now. Poor doggie :(

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