Firefighters Applaud Homeland Security Appointments

Thursday, August 30, 2007 |

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff recently announced the appointment of new members to the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) and its subcommittees.

The Homeland Security Advisory Council is the Secretary's primary advisory body and is comprised of experts from state and local governments, terrorism prevention and response communities, academia and the private sector. The council provides advice to Secretary Chertoff and the department's leadership on homeland security issues.

Among the esteemed individuals named to the Homeland Security Advisory Council was Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe, who will serve as chairman of the State and Local Officials Senior Advisory Committee.

First elected to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors in November 1996 and appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to the California Emergency Council in 2006, Supervisor Knabe has maintained a strong interest in the Fire Service, and enjoys a solid working relationship with the men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Among the Secretary's appointments to the HSAC's Emergency Responder Senior Advisory Committee is Ellis M. Stanley Sr., the General Manager of the City of Los Angeles Emergency Preparedness Department.

A former director of the Atlanta-Fulton County Emergency Management Agency, a Certified Emergency Manager and past president of the International Association of Emergency Managers, Mr. Stanley is also a member of the National Advisory Board for Harvard University's National Preparedness Leadership Institute.

Celebrating his tenth year as a respected leader within our City family, he is held in high regard by members of the Los Angeles Fire Department and those they proudly serve.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Mourns The Loss Of Two Boston Firefighters

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It is with great sadness that we share word of 2 Boston Fire Department Firefighters making the ultimate sacrifice, and eleven other firefighters being injured, while battling a restaurant fire in that city's West Roxbury neighborhood.

The men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department express their deepest sympathy to the families, friends and colleagues of Boston Fire Department (BFD) Firefighters Paul Cahill and Warren Payne, who died from injuries sustained battling the blaze.

We extend heartfelt wishes for a full and speedy recovery to those who were injured, and express our collective gratitude to the good people of Boston for their outpouring of support in this difficult time.

Submitted by Ron Myers, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Family of Five Overcome by Carbon Monoxide Fumes

Wednesday, August 29, 2007 |

Can you remember reading headlines such as "Carbon Monoxide, the Silent Killer"?

Today, a family of five came close to finding out how true that statement is.

The Lake View Terrace family was waiting to have their electrical power restored and using a small, portable generator to run fans inside the home, trying to keep cool during a recent heat wave. Although the generator was positioned outside the structure, there wasn't enough clearance between the running generator and the door. The odorless, tasteless, and colorless gas, wafted into the home.

All members of the family were transported to Pacifica Hospital of the Valley, and thankfully are expected to survive.

The men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department want to reiterate that Carbon Monoxide (CO) is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths in America, claiming more than 2000 lives each year. You can't detect it, taste it or see it – it’s an odorless, tasteless, and colorless gas, rightfully known as the "Silent Killer."

Be aware of the signs and symptoms Carbon Monoxide poisoning, which mimic the flu. At low level exposure, you can experience shortness of breath, nausea and headaches. At moderate levels, you will experience more severe headaches, dizziness, confusion, become nauseated or faint.

With advances in technology, Carbon Monoxide Detectors are widely available in stores. But you must do your homework when researching their efficiency. The technology for this detector is still developing and many not be as reliable as the smoke alarms found in homes today. Preventing CO from becoming a problem therefore, is better than relying on an alarm.

You can learn more about Carbon Monoxide by visiting:

- www.cdc.gov

- www.epa.gov

- www.emedicinehealth.com


Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

Deadline Approaching for Fire Sprinkler O-Ring Recall

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The Los Angeles Fire Department joins the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in urging property owners who have O-ring fire sprinklers covered under a previously-announced recall - and who have not yet filed a claim to replace them - to contact Central Sprinkler immediately!

Home and commercial property owners need to submit their claim by August 31, 2007 in order to receive free replacement heads. The voluntary replacement program, first announced in July 2001, included about 35 million O-ring fire sprinklers that might not operate in a fire.

To learn more, call (800) 871-3492 at any hour or visit:

www.sprinklerreplacement.com


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Welding Spark Starts San Pedro Structure Fire

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On Wednesday Tuesday, August 29 28, 2007 at 1:13 PM, 8 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 4 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Arson Unit, 1 Hazardous Materials Team, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 3 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams, 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, LAPD and L.A. Co Engines 83 and 6, all under the direction of Battalion Chief John Buck responded to a Structure Fire at 1761 W. Chandeleur in the San Pedro/White Point area.

The initial report coming into the OCD Dispatch Center was for a reported tree fire. Once Fire Department resources arrived on scene the incident was quickly upgraded to a Structure Fire response. The Incident Commander on scene, reported that a 50 foot by 100 foot section of grass on a hillside, had ignited a large pine tree, thus exposing two single family dwellings. The structure located directly in the path of where the fire started sustained the most severe damage.

With temperatures in the 90's and with a light wind, Fire Department personnel engaged in an aggressive ground and interior structure fire attack to knockdown the fire in approximately 20 minutes. The cause of the mid morning blaze was determined to be sparks from a fence welding operation. The dollar loss to the main fire structure was estimated at $600,000 ($550,000 structure, $50,000 contents). The exposure sustained a loss of $10,000 to the structure only. No injuries were reported.

Submitted on behalf of Greg Acevedo

Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

Haz Mat Incident at LAX Air Cargo Facility

Saturday, August 25, 2007 |

On Saturday, August 25, 2007 at 8:11 PM, 8 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 4 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 2 Hazardous Materials Teams, 3 EMS Battalion Captains, 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, LAX Airfield Operations, LAX Customs & Border Protection, LAX Airport Police, LAPD and LA Co. Haz Mat, under a Unified Command, responded to a HAZ MAT incident at 5720 W. Imperial Highway in the LAX/Hotel Row area.

At 8:11 p.m., a call into the OCD Dispatch Center requested a Hazardous Materials team to respond to the Lufthansa Air Cargo facility located at Aviation and Imperial Highway. Lufthansa personnel reported that a box containing a low-grade radioactive material had been punctured by a forklift after it had been off-loaded from an aircraft.

The box, one of three, was being transferred from one location in the cargo facility to another when the incident occurred at 8:10 p.m. The Fire Department Haz Mat Task Force was able to safely encapsulate the breached box within another container, rendering the incident static.

Fire resources evaluated 31 workers in the area, who were non-symptomatic and showed no signs of contamination. All were released. No aircraft were in the immediate area at the time of the incident. Los Angeles County Haz Mat assumed the lead in the removal of the breached container. There were no other report of injuries reported.

Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

Three Delivery Trucks Collide in Van Nuys

Tuesday, August 21, 2007 |

On Tuesday, August 21, 2007 at 1:40 PM, 6 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 2 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Heavy Rescue, 1 Urban Search and Rescue Unit, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team and DOT, all under the direction of Battalion Chief John Potter responded to a VEHIC at 8300 N. Havenhurst Av in the Van Nuys area.

Responding Fire Department resources, arrived on scene to find a tractor with trailer and 2 smaller delivery trucks which had collided in the intersection of Havenhurst Avenue and Roscoe Boulevard. Further triaging of the incident, Fire resources found 2 male patients and an accompanying diesel fuel spill. A Physical Rescue assignment was requested with an Urban Search and Rescue Company (USAR 88) and Heavy Rescue 56 added to the dispatch to assist in the extrication operation.

The driver of the delivery truck experienced minor injuries and was transported to an area hospital. The male passenger, approximately 20 years old, was trapped from the waist down. He was extricated and transported in critical condition, with lower extremity injuries, to an area hospital. The occupants of the other vehicles had no complaints of injuries.

DOT was requested to assist with with traffic control, shutting down Roscoe Boulevard westbound traffic at Woodley and eastbound traffic at Balboa Place, for the duration of the incident. The cause of the traffic collision is under the investigation of the local police agency.

Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

Interim Fire Chief Douglas Barry To Lead The LAFD Permanently

Monday, August 20, 2007 |

KNBC-TV Video. Click to view...Fire Chief Douglas L. Barry is a 31-year veteran of the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) who has distinguished himself through his exemplary record as a Firefighter, Engineer, Captain, Battalion Chief, Chief of Staff, and Assistant Chief, and most recently as the Interim LAFD Fire Chief.

Chief Barry joined the LAFD as a Firefighter on February 16, 1975 and quickly excelled through the ranks, promoting to Apparatus Operator in 1979, Engineer in 1980 followed by promotions to Captain I - Captain II in 1986 and 1989 respectively.

In 1993, Chief Barry assumed command of Battalion 13, where he supervised the daily operations of five Fire Stations in the South Los Angeles area. As head of Battalion 13, Chief Barry fostered strong relationships with Neighborhood Councils, Community Groups, Local Churches, as well as with the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) and Los Angeles County Fire Department.

In 1995, Chief Barry took command of the LAFD’s Operations Office, where he was responsible for overseeing the management of Department discipline, Worker’s Compensation, Wellness and Risk management programs. Chief Barry also served as liaison to the City Attorney’s Office and the LAPD.

In 1996, Fire Chief William Bamattre appointed Chief Barry to serve as his Chief of Staff, where he served as the principal liaison to the City Council and Mayor’s Office. Chief Barry also provided leadership and oversight to the Fire Chief’s Planning Section, Employee Relations Office, and Community Relations Office.

In 1997, Chief Barry assumed command of LAFD’s Battalion 11, covering six Fire Stations in the Wilshire Corridor. As head of the Battalion, Chief Barry maintained strong relationships with chambers of commerce and a number of diverse community groups.

In 2000, Chief Barry took command of Battalion 6, in the Harbor area, overseeing operations at nine Fire Stations responsible for fire protecting the Port of Los Angeles. Chief Barry also served as liaison to the U. S. Coast Guard, Port Authorities, the Chambers of Commerce and the Los Angeles County and Long Beach Fire Departments.

In 2004, Chief Barry was appointed to Assistant Chief and assigned to command Division II, which incorporates all of South Los Angeles, including the Los Angeles International Airport and Port of Los Angeles.

Before assuming the position of Interim Fire Chief, Chief Barry served as the Assistant Fire Marshal, managing the day-to-day operations of the Fire Prevention Bureau, including inspections of high-rise and commercial occupancies, brush and hazardous materials processors.

Chief Barry was born and raised in the South Bay, attending Narbonne High School, L.A. Harbor College, and California State University, Long Beach. Chief Barry is married and has three adult daughters. Chief Barry has earned the respect and support of his fellow Firefighters and community, where he serves as Treasurer/Trustee and Deacon of Mt. Sinai Baptist Church in San Pedro.

(video)

Submitted by Ron Myers, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Mourns Loss of FDNY Firefighters

Saturday, August 18, 2007 |

The men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department express their deepest sympathy to the families, friends and colleagues of New York City (FDNY) Firefighters Joseph Graffagnino and Robert Beddia, who died from injuries sustained while battling a Highrise fire at the vacant Deutsche Bank office building in Manhattan, New York.

Submitted by Ron Myers, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Chemical Release Sends 7 Students To Hospital

Friday, August 17, 2007 |

On Friday, August 17, 2007 at 1:41 PM, 2 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 2 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 EMS Battalion Captain and 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 17 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Battalion Chief John Vidovich, responded to a Multi-Patient Chemical Investigation at 152 North Vermont Avenue in mid-town Los Angeles.

Summoned by School Police, Los Angeles Firefighters arrived quickly at the gymnasium of Virgil Middle School, where they discovered 23 students who had self-evacuated the building.

According to witnesses, two dozen students had been decorating inside the gymnasium for an upcoming dance, when one boy suddenly discharged an aerosol canister in close proximity to the other students.

The effected boys and girls, all ambulatory and in mild distress with respiratory and eye irritation, were promptly moved to a well-ventilated triage area north of the gymnasium, where their complaints largely subsided.

Firefighters continued their medical assessment, emotional reassurance and medical treatment of the group while conferring with school officials, who were unable to identify the youth and therefore the exact substance involved or reason for its discharge.

A cursory evaluation of the gymnasium by LAFD personnel identified no escalating hazard or evidence of an irritant, and the facility was returned to the control of school officials.

Of the 23 students triaged, seven mildly symptomatic girls ages 12 through 13 were transported to Children's Hospital of Los Angeles in good condition.

While witnesses believe the aerosol to have been some manner of household product, the substance was not positively identified by Fire Department personnel.

The Los Angeles School Police Department will be handling the investigation.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Early Morning Fire Awakens Hollywood Residents

Thursday, August 16, 2007 |


On Thursday, August 16, 2007 at 12:58 AM, 15 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 4 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Arson Unit, 2 Urban Search and Rescue Units, 1 Hazardous Materials Team, 2 EMS Battalion Captains, 5 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams, 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, Emergency Air, Building & Safety Inspector, DOT and PD, all under the direction of Assistant Chief Ralph Terrazas, responded to a Greater Alarm Structure Fire at 1737 N. Western Av. in the Hollywood Hills area.

Fire Department resources arriving on scene of the early morning incident, found a 2 story single family dwelling well involved. The incident was immediately upgraded because of exposures located on three sides of the main fire building. An immediate evacuation of residents in all exposures was coordinated with the establishment of firefighting handlines.
The well established fire, presented another problem, the structural integrity of the roof. Members were backed out of the intense interior fire fight, transitioning to a defensive attack with master streams, just as a partial roof collapse on the "D" side of the structure presented itself. A request for a Building & Safety Inspector was made regarding the integrity of the structure.

It took 110 firefighters 37 minutes to extinguish the early morning fire. The cause and dollar loss estimate are undetermined until the completion of the fire investigation. There were no civilian injuries. One Firefighter did sustain minor injuries and was transported to an area hospital in good condition.

Residents of the exposure buildings were safely rehoused. Two units of the hotel located in the "D" side exposure, experienced minor flame impingement, displacing three adults whose housing needs were addressed by the building manager.

Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

No Better Time To Prepare than Right Now

Wednesday, August 15, 2007 |

As Tropical Storm Dean gathers strength in the Atlantic, Tropical Storm Erin in the Gulf threatens the coast of Texas and Hurricane Flossie weakens after a threat to our friends in Hawaii, the Los Angeles Fire Department joins the Federal Emergency Management Agency in reminding you: there is no better time to prepare than right now!

Were that not enough, this afternoon's sizeable temblor in Peru - little more than a week after an early-morning wake up call in Los Angeles, helps underscore the importance of personal disaster preparedness.

Here’s what you can do to get ready now:

Click here for more information from READY.GOVPrepare a disaster kit for your home: Stock up on non-perishable food and water to fully sustain you and your family for one week or more. Ensure you have important papers (e.g. insurance, identification), first aid kit, a supply of prescription medicines, spare eyeglasses and other specialty items in your preparedness kit.

In addition, plan to have an emergency kit for your car in case you need to evacuate. While creating a disaster kit, remember to pack the necessary items for your pets.

Create an emergency plan: Know what to do if you have to evacuate. It is also critical to know local evacuation routes, nearby safe shelters and have a communication plan in place for your family. We suggest you have a common emergency contact number for a friend or relative out of state who can track and share your whereabouts in the event of an emergency.

To stay informed during an emergency, find and mark your local news radio station(s) on a battery-powered radio today - and don't forget your fresh supply of batteries!

Information to help you survive is available right now at:

ready.gov -and- lafd.org/eqbook.pdf


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Awards Ceremony This Sunday at Kodak Theatre in Hollywood

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The world-famous Kodak Theatre in HollywoodThe Los Angeles Fire Department invites you to join Firefighters, their families and local dignitaries this Sunday at the world-famous Kodak Theatre in Hollywood for the First Annual LAFD Honorary Awards Ceremony.

Real-life stories of local bravery and selflessness will be narrated by gifted orator and radio talk show host Dennis Prager... who Toastmasters has referred to as "one of America's five best speakers."

It will be a rewarding evening for all in attendance, as we stand together to applaud those who have unblinkingly placed the needs - and sometimes the lives of others ahead of their own.

This August 19, 2007 event will honor members of the LAFD who have demonstrated profound bravery and heroism. Awards presented will include the Medal of Valor, Medal of Merit and Letters of Special Commendation, as well as the Phoenix Award for those who suffered a duty related death. Capping the evening will be a very special Lifetime Achievement Award.

The LAFD Museum and Firefighter Memorial in HollywoodAfter the Ceremony, a complimentary shuttle will bring you to a festive reception with food and music at historic former Fire Station 27 in Hollywood, home to the LAFD Museum and Firefighter Memorial.

Please bring your family to join ours for one inspiring night at two world-class venues - for only $15.00 per person!

Sunday, August 19, 2007
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
The Kodak Theatre
6801 Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood, CA 90028


For tickets and additional information, please contact the LAFD Planning Section directly at (213)978-3845.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Video: 'Ventilate' Your Career Dreams

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If you've always harnessed the passion for an unconventional and rewarding career with unparalleled opportunity, we hope you'll consider the Los Angeles Fire Department as your life's work.

LAFD - 'Ventilate' Your Career Dreams:


To learn more about your career as a Los Angeles Firefighter, call (213)485-8032 or visit:

joinLAFD.org


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Griffith Park Burns Again

Tuesday, August 14, 2007 |

On Tuesday, August 14, 2007 at 4:15 PM, 20 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 4 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Arson Unit, 1 Rehab Unit, 4 Helicopters, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 5 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams, 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, 4 LACoFD Camp Crews, 1 LACoFD Helicopter, 1 CERT Coordinator, and other Support Staff all under the direction of Assistant Chief Terrance Manning responded to a Brush Fire at 162 Griffith Park, West of The Observatory in Griffith Park.

Park Rangers notified the Fire Department that they had reports of a brush fire burning within the Griffith Park area. A full "brush assignment" was dispatched to the reported location. The first Firefighters to arrive on scene reported that approximately one acre of medium brush was burning uphill, just east of Western Canyon Rd. Additional Firefighters and aerial support were immediately requested in an effort to gain control of the fire.

It took over 100 Firefighters on the ground, augmented by 5 water dropping helicopters just 90 minutes to control the fire.
The fire was contained to 5 acres. No structures were threatened or damaged. There were no reported injuries and the cause of the fire remains under investigation.

(video) (images) (images)

Submitted by Ron Myers, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Fatality Traffic in Canoga Park

Monday, August 13, 2007 |

On Monday, August 13, 2007 at 2:24 PM, 4 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 1 LAFD Rescue Ambulance, 1 Heavy Rescue, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team and DOT, all under the direction of Battalion Chief Mark Jones, responded to a VEHIC at 20500 W. Sherman Wy in the Canoga Park area.

An off duty CHP officer notified the OCD Dispatch Center of a traffic accident with a person trapped inside one vehicle. When Fire Department resources arrived on scene and assessed the incident, it was quickly upgraded to a physical rescue assignment.

A head-on collision, between a small Toyota Camry and a medical delivery truck, had severely trapped the female driver of the small compact car. The 25 year old female was pronounced at the scene, per DHS protocol Reference 814, with massive crush injuries. The driver of the delivery truck was transported to an area hospital in stable condition complaining of moderate injuries and chest pains.

The cause of the traffic collision is under the investigation of the local law enforcement agency. Fire Department resources will remain on the scene to assist the Coroner's office with the body removal. Mason Avenue will be closed to traffic until the completion of the incident.

Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

Firefighters Cool Off Troops in the Middle East

Sunday, August 12, 2007 |

Members of your Los Angeles Fire Department have been involved in a unique effort to support U.S. troops in the Middle East, and encourage you to join them.

Unbearable Heat That Firefighters Understand

Staggering heat faced by U.S. Troops in the Middle East. Click to view more...Every day, our troops conduct physically demanding operations wearing full combat gear that includes body armor. With ambient temperatures in the Middle East often rising above 120 degrees, a specially constructed Modular Combat Cooling System - that includes a helmet liner and a neck scarf, are now in high demand by our soldiers.

In a show of solidarity and support, LAFD members have made personal donations and gathered contributions from friends and family to raise $118,364.00 for the purchase of these cooling vests for their military Brothers and Sisters.

How The 'Cool Off' Project Came About

American Hero Trevor Win'E. Click to view more...In April of 2004, Trevor Anthony Win'E died when his armored vehicle struck an explosive device near Mosul, Iraq. As one might imagine, Trevor’s mother Debi Win’E was distraught and sought a way to heal.

Prior to her son’s death, Debi had shipped a cooling vest for Trevor to wear under his camouflage during the summer months. The high-tech lightweight vest became very popular in his unit - to the point Trevor would share it with other soldiers.

Debi soon initiated the Trevor Win’E Memorial Fund. The Memorial Fund purchases and delivers the cooling vests to assist other soldiers that suffer from the scorching temperatures of the Middle East.

What Is The Modular Combat Cooling System?

The MCCS is a vest containing reusable chemical packs manufactured to freeze solid without benefit of refrigeration. The total expense to get one vest to a soldier is $174. For every tenth vest purchased the vendor has been donating one additional vest.

How Can You Help?

We welcome you to join Neighborhood Firefighters in supporting this important and worthwhile campaign. 100% of your contribution goes to purchasing and shipping the cooling vest to our troops. Debi includes a letter with each vest explaining where they came from, and asks the troops to leave the vests in country for other soldiers when they rotate home.

Please join Firefighters in sending your check today
payable to the "Trevor Win’E Memorial Fund":

Bank of the West
Trevor Win’E Memorial Fund
4400 MacArthur Blvd.
Newport Beach, CA 92660

The Trevor Win'E Memorial Fund is a 501(c)3 registered charity
Tax ID:20-8539627. Your donation can be tax deductible


NOTE: By writing 'LAFD' on the bottom of your check, an LAFD patch will be sewn onto each vest purchased through this effort. It's a small but important way to remind our soldiers of those at home who remain inspired by their bravery.

To learn more, please visit:

www.trevorwine.com



Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Three Occupancy Strip Mall Burns in Pico Union Area

Saturday, August 11, 2007 |

On Saturday, August 11, 2007 at 12:26 PM, 12 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 3 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Arson Unit, 2 Urban Search and Rescue Units, 1 Hazardous Materials Team, 2 EMS Battalion Captains, 3 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams, 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, DOT and Emergency Air, all under the direction of Assistant Chief Ralph Terrazas, responded to a Greater Alarm Structure Fire at 1512 W. 7th St. in the Pico Union area.

The first Fire Department resources were dispatched to Reported Smoke. As Fire Department personnel arrived on scene, they found a one story, bridge truss, commercial strip mall, with fire and pressurized smoke coming from one of the three occupancies. An immediate call for additional companies was made.

Fire personnel commenced an aggressive and coordinated ventilation operation and interior fire attack. It was indicated that the bulk of the fire was above the mezzanine towards the "D" side of the building and the fire had extended into the attic.

The occupancies in the complex were an Express Dollar & Up, an auto parts store and a church. The cause of the fire and the estimated dollar loss are undetermined until the completion of the fire investigation. No injuries were reported.

Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

No Fatalities in 210 Freeway Chain of Events

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On Saturday, August 11, 2007 at 8:54 AM, 5 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 5 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Heavy Rescue, 1 Urban Search and Rescue Unit, 3 EMS Battalion Captains, 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, the Del Rosa Hot Shot Crew from SBCo Fire, LACo Engine 74 and Squad 19, DOT and the LAPD, all under the direction of Battalion Chief Ronnie Villanueva responded to a Traffic at the EB 210 FY x Paxton St. in the Sylmar area.

The initial report to the OCD Dispatch center indicated a minor traffic accident on the Eastbound 210 Freeway. The first arriving resources on scene was the San Bernardino County, Del Rosa Hot Shots, returning home from the Zaca Fire in Santa Barbara County. The Hot Shot crew were instrumental in providing the initial assessment and patient intervention until additional resources arrived.

Once the men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department arrived on scene, the incident was upgraded to a Vehic with multiple patients and involving 3 vehicles. The incident began on the 210 Freeway with a driver being cut off, starting a chain of events which included a vehicle fire, a collision and a vehicle over the embankment rolling over and landing in the alley behind a row of small commercials.

There were 7 patients, 3 minor children under the age of 7 and 4 adults, transported to area hospitals complaining of minor pain to the neck and back, minor facial lacerations from broken glass and abrasions from the activation of air bags. No fatalities in the incident can be attributed to all occupants using of seat belts.


Submitted by d'Lisa Davies
Los Angeles Fire Department

A True Friend's Simple Yet Poignant Request...

Friday, August 10, 2007 |

Tonight's entry is among the more difficult to share; yet at the heart of this message is something we feel vital to convey.

With the LAFD News & Information blog recently recording its 1,000,000th direct page view, we had planned to offer a simple thanks to the many who have helped us along the way.

Among the local bloggers who have actively supported our mission, are a handful who have syndicated LAFD information wholesale to help others lead safer, healthier and more productive lives.

Ed Padgett is one such man.

An unsung hero of the Los Angeles Times for the past thirty-five years, Ed labors intensely through the night to make sure that you and I hear a comforting pre-dawn 'thump' at our doorstep. In his off-duty time, Ed routinely shares LAFD postings with his loyal readers, greatly furthering our reach.

That something as sophomoric as our blog might be worthy of Ed's personal endorsement and continued on-line distribution remains humbling indeed.

A day like any other - and then not...

This past Wednesday [August 8, 2007] 1,105 LAFD 'B' Platoon members rose quietly for work in the pre-dawn hours to be greeted by the aroma of fresh coffee and the welcome sound of their newspaper arrival.

For Ed though, there was an unwelcome sound - a knock at his front door.

The Coroner's Investigator was certainly cordial and sympathetic. Yet, his words were any parents worst nightmare.

Bryan Padgett was 24.

As prominent bloggers expressed condolence to Ed and his family, it became apparent that Bryan's death was not only untimely but awkward.

...which remains the genesis for this post.

Ed Padgett has gladly shared our words of fire and life safety with tens of thousands of his blog visitors. Not once did we ask him to do so, nor have we ever had a genuine chance to properly say thanks.

This week, at a time of immense sorrow, Ed expressed but one hope:

"...from the damage in the aftermath, Bryan died an instant death. I snapped many photographs and have a few pictures of what is left of Bryan's Mustang, in hopes some young adults and teens might understand the consequences of street racing."
Ed, please consider it done.

In Bryan's memory, we pledge to work together in the coming year with our friends in law enforcement to highlight such dangers, if for no other reason than to prevent the unspeakable heartache that you and your family must now endure. We trust that many of our readers will do the same.

In closing, we would like to thank Engine 32, Squad 32 and Quint 153 of the Los Angeles County Fire Department, as well as the crew from Cole-Schaefer Ambulance for their prompt, professional and highly capable response that night. Though Bryan was sadly beyond their help, they saw that he was treated with the utmost of dignity and respect.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

We Can't Predict, But We Can Prepare!

Thursday, August 09, 2007 |

An earthquake near Chatsworth, California felt across a widely populated area this morning thankfully caused no loss of life, serious injury or signficant damage.

While Mother Nature tells us (in a not so subtle way) that we live in Earthquake Country, the men and women of your Los Angeles Fire Department remind you:

You Can't Predict... But You Can Prepare!

Mother Nature doesn't always give a warning. Now that we agree on that, here are your keys to survival:



Kindly share this disaster preparedness message with your friends and family, before... the ground... starts... shaking!


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Take Advantage of Traveler Emergency Contact Information

Wednesday, August 08, 2007 |

If you've traveled this Summer, you know that several airlines now have a process for travelers to provide contact information and travel itinerary data in case of emergency.

In light of recent events involving an airline traveler with a potentially infectious disease, the U.S. Centers For Disease Control now strongly encourages travelers to provide this information to ensure they can be reached in case of an emergency.

Along with airline-specific emergency contact forms or procedures, U.S. Citizens who are traveling to or visiting another country can now utilize the U.S. State Department's free travel registration service. To learn more:

travelregistration.state.gov


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Firefighters Rescue Arleta Man From Beneath Vehicle

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On Wednesday, August 8, 2007 at 10:25 AM, 4 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 2 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Heavy Rescue, 1 Urban Search and Rescue Unit, 1 EMS Battalion Captain and 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 33 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Captain I Elton Johnson responded to a Man Trapped Beneath a Vehicle behind 8450 Van Nuys Boulevard in Panorama City.

According to witnesses, a young adult woman backed her vehicle onto an 81 year-old Arleta man walking in the parking lot behind Washington Mutual Savings. Though brought to a stop by the screams of bystanders, the woman's compact vehicle remained on top of the badly trapped the man.

The swift response of Neighborhood Firefighters was promptly supplemented by an enhanced rescue assignment, which thankfully proved unnecessary, as first to arrive Engine Company 7 made deft use of the heavy lift pneumatic bladder from their apparatus to free the man.

Raising the vehicle and rescuing the non-breathing octogenarian - who briefly retained a pulse, Firefighters assisted his respirations as LAFD Paramedics commenced Advanced Life Support measures during rapid transport to the Trauma Center at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in Mission Hills.

When LAFD Paramedics departed the hospital at 11:10 AM, the gravely injured man was still fighting for his life.

The motorist, who was visibly upset but not apparently injured, was interviewed by Los Angeles Police Officers from the Valley Traffic Division, who are handling the investigation.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Worker Escapes Serious Injury in Trench Collapse

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On Wednesday, August 8, 2007 at 8:36 AM, 8 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 4 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Heavy Rescue, 2 Urban Search and Rescue Units, 1 EMS Battalion Captain and 2 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams, a total of 63 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Battalion Chief Craig Yoder, responded to a Trench Rescue at 2000 South Central Avenue in South Los Angeles.

Firefighters arrived quickly to discover a 33 year-old male construction worker trapped to his thighs at a construction site trench collapse.

The man had reportedly been in a 5-foot-deep, 2-foot wide by 75-foot long trench located in an open-air 20-foot subgrade location that Firefighters surmised would become the subterranean parking lot for a massive apartment building under construction.

According to witnesses, the trapped man had been in the trench using hand-tools in the vicinity of a backhoe, when the trench walls suddenly gave way. Firefighters found the man conscious and alert but mired nearly to his pelvis under hundreds of pounds of loose soil.

With specialized resources, including two LAFD Urban Search and Rescue Teams responding, first-arriving Firefighters quickly established Incident Command and scene safety precautions for the rescue.

As trench edge protection issues and shoring elements were identified and being assembled, Firefighters began initial rescue efforts with the largely accessible man, by using hand tools to move soil in a strategic fashion.

With medical equipment, a rescue harness and other elements being readied for the possibility of an extended rescue, the first-arriving Firefighters were able to free the laborer less than 17 minutes after his ordeal began.

In good condition and complaining only of pain to his left knee, the Pacoima man was transported by LAFD ambulance to the Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center.

No other injuries were reported.

Questions regarding the presence, need or injured man's use of safety equipment and approved worksite procedures remain within the purview of Cal-OSHA officials.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

U.S. Fire Administration offers 'NFAOnline'

Monday, August 06, 2007 |

Firefighters and those they proudly serve are encouraged to avail themselves to free training at 'NFAOnline'...

EMMITSBURG, MD. – The U.S. Fire Administration's National Fire Academy is pleased to announce the launch of a new Web-based online training system - NFAOnline. NFAOnline provides an easy, one-stop Web site where fire and emergency services personnel, first responders, emergency management personnel, and the general public will find free training and education programs that they can complete at their own pace.

"Now is the time for us to embrace the future and improve our education through distance learning," said NFA Superintendent, Dr. Denis Onieal. "NFAOnline provides another option to help further the professionalism of the nation's fire and emergency services and strengthen their ability to combat all hazard emergencies."

NFAOnline provides a user-friendly, state-of-the art training system with technical support and the ability for the student to immediately print a certificate and transcript. The primary effort of NFAOnline is to make available training and materials for the fire service, particularly those unable to attend resident courses in Emmitsburg, Maryland .

There are currently eight courses available on the new NFAOnline. Additional courses are in development and will be added in coming weeks. Course subjects include fire prevention, fire service supervision, incident management (ICS 100 and ICS 200), emergency response to terrorist incidents, and emergency medical services.


To enroll in NFAOnline, select New Students at:

www.nfaonline.dhs.gov


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Video: America's Proudest - LAFD Station 9

Sunday, August 05, 2007 |

A recent post on the LAFD News & Information blog, as well as a roster of our Ten Busiest Fire Stations, have highlighted the daily efforts of those assigned to Fire Station 9, arguably the busiest Fire Station in the United States.

Serving our Central City and a 'Skid Row' community largely forgotten by others, those assigned to Los Angeles Fire Station 9 are described by some as 'the bravest'. We think they equally deserve to be called the proudest.

Our friends at Adelante Film & TV have captured the essence of these proud public servants in Station 9.



The LAFD: Serving with Courage, Integrity and Pride

Also...KNBC-TV News video coverage of this story


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

KABC-TV Salutes LAFD 'Cool Kid' Joe Montoya

Saturday, August 04, 2007 |

LAFD Cool Kid Joe Montoya. Click to learn more...

Cool Kid Joe Montoya Finds New Path in Fighting Fire
By Danny Romero
KABC-TV

HOLLYWOOD, Aug. 2, 2007 (KABC-TV) - Our Cool Kid is a young man who has found his calling and a way to turn his life around in a visit to a local fire station.

At Los Angeles Fire Department Station 27, Cool Kid Joe Montoya has joined the Explorer Program. He has found that the hands-on training feeds his need for knowledge.

"You never stop learning in this job; you always learn something new. Even the oldest guy here still learns some things every day. I love learning, so this is the perfect job for me: Learn, learn, learn," says Joe Montoya... (more...)


We're very proud of you Joe, and thank KABC-TV for sharing your inspiring story.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

The Busiest Fire Stations in Los Angeles

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Did you know that the Los Angeles Fire Department averaged 2,098 responses each day throughout the months of January, February and March 2007?

During this quarter-year period, LAFD resources made 188,837 responses to 90,847 emergency incidents. This represents a 4.6% increase in incidents and a 3.9% increase in responses compared to the same three-month period the year before.

Today, we'd like to offer you a glimpse at the Ten Busiest Fire Stations in the City of Los Angeles.



  1. Fire Station 9 - Central City
    55 responses per day


  2. Fire Station 64 - South Los Angeles
    52 responses per day


  3. Fire Station 57 - South Los Angeles
    51 responses per day


  4. Fire Station 33 - South Los Angeles
    48 responses per day


  5. Fire Station 46 - Coliseum Area
    47 responses per day


  6. Fire Station 66 - Southwest Los Angeles/Hyde Park
    47 responses per day


  7. Fire Station 39 - Van Nuys
    45 responses per day


  8. Fire Station 11 - Westlake/MacArthur Park
    41 responses per day


  9. Fire Station 27 - Hollywood
    41 responses per day


  10. Fire Station 61 - Fairfax/Park LaBrea
    39 responses per day


Thankfully, our City's leaders are keenly aware of the burgeoning demands placed upon Firefighters, and continue to make the many life safety services we provide a top priority.

Are we in some way "proud" of these numbers? Not really. In many cases these responses could have been prevented through more prudent, safe or healthy behavior by those we serve - or by expanded efforts in life safety education and fire prevention.

While working hard with members of the community to address these challenges, rest assured that the men and women of the LAFD remain focused not on numbers, but on the quality of care and service provided to those who visit, reside and work in America's second-largest city.

At the LAFD it's never about numbers, it's *always* about doing our best!


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Workers Spark Pair of High Rise Fires in Los Angeles

Friday, August 03, 2007 |

Firefighters in Downtown Los Angeles quickly tamed a pair of structure fires that erupted Friday in two separate high-rise buildings undergoing renovation.

On Friday, August 3, 2007 at 10:23 AM, 14 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 3 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Arson Unit, 1 Hazardous Materials Squad, 4 Helicopters, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 3 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams and 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 100 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel, under the direction of Assistant Chief Roderick Garcia, responded to a High Rise Structure Fire at 600 South Spring Street in historic downtown Los Angeles.

Firefighters arrived quickly to discover smoke showing from the 17th floor of a high-rise office building undergoing a major renovation.

Making their way up a stairway through the largely demolished interior of the 273,765 square-foot building while carrying hundreds of pounds of equipment, teams of Firefighters soon confined a stubborn blaze to debris that included insulation, on southeast corner of the 17th floor.

The fire was fully extinguished in less than 40 minutes, and there were no injuries.

Loss from the fire is still being tabulated. The blaze is attributed to the careless use of a welder's torch.

...and little more than an hour after fully extinguishing that blaze, many of the same Firefighters responded...

On Friday, August 3, 2007 at 12:35 PM, 10 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 4 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 2 Arson Units, 1 Hazardous Materials Squad, 4 Helicopters, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 3 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams and 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 81 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Battalion Chief Dan McCarty responded to a High Rise Structure Fire at 756 South Broadway Street in the Jewelry District of downtown Los Angeles.

Firefighters arrived quickly to find smoke showing from the northeast corner of the 8th floor at the Chapman Flats, a 170,000 square-foot high-rise office building undergoing a residential transformation.

According to witnesses, the fuel line of a pressure washer being used on the 8th floor suddenly ruptured, causing an intense fire that brought dozens of Firefighters up stairwells of the 95 year-old building carrying heavy equipment to do battle against the flames.

The fire was skilfully confined to the region of origin, and extinguished in just 12 minutes.

An adult male worker, who unsuccessfully attempted to fight the fire, sustained moderate smoke inhalation. He was subsequently evaluated by Los Angeles Fire Department Paramedics before transport to Good Samaritan Hospital in fair condition.

No other injuries were reported.

Monetary loss from the blaze is still being tabulated. LAFD Investigators affirmed witnesses account of the fire, and categorized it as accidental.

It should be noted that in at least one of the aforementioned incidents, workers had no fire extinguishers at hand.


(photo of fire damage at Chapman Flats)


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Turns the Tables on a Tech Interview

Wednesday, August 01, 2007 |

The Los Angeles Fire Department has earned a great deal of buzz this week regarding the Department's nascent on-line offerings, including our increasingly popular LAFD_ALERT service, Twitter Feed, Flickr Photo Gallery and YouTube Channel.

Earlier today, we received a call from Heather Havenstein, a Senior Reporter for Computerworld Magazine, seeking an interview by telephone to discuss the use of technology in LAFD Media and Public Relations.

Sure we said... but why be conventional?

Most LAFD stakeholders have seen the result of a routine interview. What if instead - in the spirit of Web 2.0, they could actually listen on-line as the interview took place, and then had an opportunity to speak with the reporter?

Heather kindly agreed. So, on Thursday, August 2, 2007 at 7:00AM Pacific Time, we'll be activating our internet-based LAFD TalkRadio to allow you to listen in and later participate, as we discuss present and future LAFD internet offerings with Computerworld Magazine.

To learn more, please click here or on the logo below...

Listen Live to LAFD Talk Radio


If you missed the live portion of the show, not to worry. The show is now archived as a podcast and the show notes are hosted by our friends at BlogTalkRadio.com.

Heather's articles are now on-line:


- Computerworld.com article

- PC World article


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department