How Far We've Come: 1958 Alarm Video Features LAFD

Tuesday, September 30, 2008 |

As time passes, it is easy for us to forget how far America's Fire Service has progressed in the last fifty years.

"When Every Minute Counts" is a 1958 short movie from the American District Telegraph Company, now commonly referred to as ADT.

Featuring actors in speaking roles intertwined with late 1950's footage of the Los Angeles Fire Department, this precursor to today's 'infomercial' underscores the advances within the alarm industry and among first responders since Ike was in office and the Dodgers came to Los Angeles.

We trust you'll enjoy this commercial peek at the LAFD of 1958.

To learn more about the Los Angeles Fire Department in any year, please plan your visit to the LAFD Historical Society Museums in Hollywood and San Pedro, as well as the African-American Firefighter Museum in South Los Angeles.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Flames Consume Home Under Construction near Hancock Park


On Tuesday, September 30, 2008 at 1:10 AM, 8 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 2 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Arson Unit, 1 Hazardous Materials Team, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 2 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams and 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 56 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Battalion Chief Ralph Ramirez, responded to a Greater Alarm Structure Fire at 501 North Citrus Avenue near the Hancock Park area of Los Angeles.

Firefighters arrived quickly to discover a large 2 story single family home on a corner lot in the final stages of construction and fully involved with fire.

An aggressive and well-coordinated assault with handlines and heavy streams allowed firefighters to confine the flames to the 3,000+ square foot structure of origin.

A single family home to the north sustained door and window damage only from radiant heat. Residents of that location, as well as the owners of the burning structure staying in a remote guest house on their property, were untouched by the flames.

The fire was extinguished in just 31 minutes. There were no injuries.

Preliminary structural loss is estimated to be at least $500,000. The cause of this intense early morning blaze, which nearly consumed the building, remains under investigation.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

30 Days, 30 Tips... Will We Make a Difference?


September is National Preparedness Month. Click to learn more...During September 2008, the Los Angeles Fire Department again made good on its annual pledge to the Ad Council and Homeland Security officials to do our part in publicizing 'National Preparedness Month'.

In fulfilling that pledge, we were pleased to offer daily tips and other resources to help prepare you for foreseeable emergencies.

As National Preparedness Month draws to a close, we remain grateful to the homeowner's associations, community groups and bloggers that syndicated our content, and to each of you for visiting the LAFD News & Information blog during the past thirty days.

The lingering question: have we done enough?

The operative word of course is 'we'. While reading, following the links and printing daily safety tips is helpful, there remains a need for each of us to take action today.

Please stay safe, keep healthy and always be prepared!

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Airborne L.A. Firefighters Team Against Wildfire

Sunday, September 28, 2008 |

A recent press conference conducted jointly by the Los Angeles Fire Department and Los Angeles County Fire Department, displayed the life-saving teamwork of our region's airborne firefighters.

KCAL-TV's Dave Malkoff reports...

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Where are the Police in Los Angeles?

Saturday, September 27, 2008 |

Click to Find LAPD...Many of the media inquires we receive hourly at the Fire Department Media Desk are not about Fire Department operations at all.

What is the media politely yet persistently seeking?

The name and contact information for Los Angeles Police Stations related to addresses or locations in our City.

To ease this frequently cumbersome workload and make the media's job easier, we created a special web page that helps them "Find the LAPD". You too are welcome to visit, *bookmark* and use:

You'll find convenient search features and pull-down menus, as well as links to Police Department Press Releases and Crime Maps.

For comprehensive Los Angeles Police Department information, please be certain to visit and bookmark their official website:

...and remember that from within the City of Los Angeles, you can use 3-1-1 or 877-ASK-LAPD to contact the Police Department for public inquiries and non-emergency services.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Fiery Collision Claims Life in Los Angeles


On Saturday, September 27, 2008 at 4:00 AM, 1 Company of Los Angeles Firefighters, 1 LAFD Rescue Ambulance and 2 Arson Units responded to a Civilian Fatality Traffic Collision with Fire near 1525 South Figueroa Street in the South Park area of downtown Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Firefighters arrived quickly to discover a mid-sized sedan that had struck an automotive showroom before erupting in flames. Despite their rapid response and extinguishment of the fire, LAFD personnel were unable to assist the sole occupant of the car, who was burned and perished at the scene.

The collision is under formal investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department's Central Traffic Division, working closely with the Los Angeles County Coroner's Office, which will seek to determine the decedent's gender, age and identity, as well as the precise cause, time and manner of their death.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Metro Blue Line Train & Bus Collide south of Downtown L.A.

Friday, September 19, 2008 |

Fifteen persons aboard a Metro Blue Line train sustained non-life threatening injury, when their Long Beach bound light rail train collided with an out of service Metro Local transit bus at the intersection of Washington Boulevard and Griffith Avenue south of downtown Los Angeles on September 19, 2008.

As seen in this video, the well-rehearsed triage, treatment and transportation efforts of more than 50 Los Angeles Firefighters soon brought the situation under control.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Releases 9-1-1 Audio for Metrolink Collision

Wednesday, September 17, 2008 |

The recent tragedy involving a collision between a Metrolink commuter train and a freight train in the Chatsworth area of Los Angeles affected many lives both within the Los Angeles area and nationwide. Over the course of four hours, the LAFD Dispatch Center received hundreds of 9-1-1 calls for assistance at the collision site, in addition to their normal call volume.

The same men and women answering the 9-1-1 calls for help also coordinated the dispatch and control of over 100 LAFD Fire Companies, Ambulances, Helicopters, Support and Command Staff, 80 private ambulances, and numerous resources from allied agencies.

9-1-1 calls for help can be heartbreaking and extremely stressful under the best of conditions. Many times, we forget to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of those Firefighters and Paramedics working behind the scene to provide a safety net for those living, working, and visiting our fine City.

The Los Angeles Fire Department has received dozens of requests for the release of the 9-1-1 tapes related to the Metrolink incident. Since it would take hundreds of hours to assemble, edit and distribute this information, the probability of fulfilling this request within a reasonable period of time would be doubtful.

Therefore, the LAFD has assembled a small sampling of 9-1-1 calls which are reflective of the type of calls being received during this event. Certain information, such as names, phone numbers, and personally identifiable information has been redacted for privacy reasons.

With such a traumatic event, it is respectfully requested that any reproduction or distribution of these audio files be done in a dignified and respectful manner. These will be the only 9-1-1 audio files released by the Los Angeles Fire Department via the LAFD News & Information blog, and they may be withdrawn without notice.

Submitted by Ron Myers, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Woman Dies In Mar Vista Home Fire

Monday, September 08, 2008 |

On Monday, September 8, 2008 at 5:25 AM, 5 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 2 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 3 Arson Units, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, and 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, under the direction of Battalion Chief Michael Greenup responded to a Structure Fire With a Civilian Fatality at 3448 S. Colonial Av. in Mar Vista/Del Rey.

Firefighters arrived to find heavy fire showing from a single-family home. It took twenty-five Firefighters just twenty minutes to contain the fire. During a search of the home, a 37 year-old female was discovered deceased inside. The cause has been determined to be "accidental, most probably related to candles." The dollar loss has yet to be determined.

Submitted by Ron Myers, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Hollywood Hills Evacuation Drill Underscores the Need to Prepare

Sunday, September 07, 2008 |

A recent evacuation drill conducted jointly by the Los Angeles Fire Department and Police Department, underscores the life-saving importance of a well practiced evacuation plan.

KCAL-TV's Juan Fernandez reports...

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

September is 'National Preparedness Month'

Saturday, September 06, 2008 |

September is National Preparedness Month. Click to learn more...During September 2008, the Los Angeles Fire Department is again teaming with the Department of Homeland Security's Ready project in encouraging Americans to take an active role in personal and community disaster preparedness.

With a motto that inspires us to Get a Kit, Make a Plan, Be Informed and Get Involved, National Preparedness Month is a nationwide campaign highlighting the simple steps that each of us can take to be prepared for emergencies.

Following widespread acclaim from last year's LAFD offerings, we are again proud to be an official NPM Coalition member featuring daily tips that can help you and your loved ones prepare for the unthinkable.

This month, a new daily preparedness tip will appear atop each LAFD blog article - directly below the National Preparedness Month banner. We hope you will consider this important information when preparing your home and family.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

The Dodgers Salute Public Safety on 'Heroes Day'

Monday, September 01, 2008 |

Los Angeles Dodgers 50th Anniversary in Los Angeles. Click to learn more...We encourage you to join members of the armed forces, public safety personnel and their families on Sunday afternoon, September 7, 2008 when the Los Angeles Dodgers take on the Arizona Diamondbacks on Heroes Day at Dodger Stadium.

The Dodgers will honor servicemen and women from all over Los Angeles in a stirring pregame ceremony to include a moment of silence for fallen LAFD Firefighter Brent Lovrien, a ceremonial first pitch by the family of fallen SWAT Officer Randy Simmons and helicopter flyovers honoring all branches of our military and all sectors of Los Angeles public safety.

Though game time is 1:10PM, we strongly urge you to arrive early to witness the pregame ceremony.

If you have not yet purchased tickets for the game through LAFD advanced sales, please visit or contact the Dodgers Ticket office toll-free at (866)DODGERS (866-363-4377).

We hope you and your family can join us. If not, we kindly ask you to take a moment for personal reflection - and then to join us in giving thanks to those in uniform, especially our personal heroes of the U.S. Armed Forces.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

The Busiest Fire Engines in Los Angeles


Did you know that the Los Angeles Fire Department averaged 2,104 responses each day during the months of January, February and March 2008?

During this quarter-year period, LAFD resources made 191,475 responses to 93,080 emergency incidents. This represents a 2.5% increase in incidents and a 1.4% increase in responses compared to the same three-month period the year before.

While the LAFD is comprised of diverse resources, such as Engines, Aerial Ladder Trucks, Paramedic and non-Paramedic Ambulances, Command Staff and Special Response Vehicles, we'd like to offer a glimpse at the busiest Engine Companies in the City of Los Angeles.

The ten busiest LAFD Engine Companies...

1. Engine 64 - South Los Angeles
15.1 responses per day

2. Engine 209 - Central City
14.6 responses per day

3. Engine 9 - Central City
14.6 responses per day

4. Engine 57 - South Los Angeles
13.7 responses per day

5. Engine 66 - Southwest Los Angeles/Hyde Park
13.0 responses per day

6. Engine 46 - Coliseum
12.9 responses per day

7. Engine 13 - Koreatown/Pico Heights
12.3 responses per day

8. Engine 65 - Watts
12.3 responses per day

9. Engine 39 - Van Nuys
12.1 responses per day

10. Engine 15 - USC University Village
11.3 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 provided by the LAFD a 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 and 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

Firefighters Support Senator's District Food Drive


California State Senator Jenny OropezaFirefighters serving within California State Senator Jenny Oropeza's 28th District are pleased to participate in the Senator's Day of Remembrance and Service activities.

Senator Oropeza, author of a successful state resolution to annually recognize the nation's loss on September 11, 2001, has each year since urged those living in her district to help those in need.

Now through September 13, Fire Stations in the Senator's District will serve as collection points for non-perishable food items for the needy.

To identify the Fire Stations in the Senator's District participating in this event, please call (310) 318-6994 or visit:

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Water Rescue Team Enroute to Baton Rouge


In response to a formal request made through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact to the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services (OES), the Los Angeles Fire Department has mobilized an elite cadre of Swift Water Rescue trained firefighters toward Baton Rouge, Louisiana to assist Gulf Coast residents who may become afflicted by Hurricane Gustav.

These fourteen specially-trained, certified and equipped Los Angeles Firefighters will focus on all types of water rescue. Their response is separate from the 28 member LAFD-FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Team now in Texas for specialized non-water rescues.

The LAFD Swift Water Rescue Team is traveling the 1800+ miles toward Baton Rouge in a fleet of specially equipped Fire Department and OES vehicles that contain inflatable boats, personal watercraft, technical rescue equipment and enough supplies to remain self-sufficient and highly mobile for up to fourteen days of deployment.

The Los Angeles Fire Department rescuers expect to mesh closely with local, regional, State and Federal resources in responding to acute life safety needs created by storm activity.

Most importantly, along with their considerable skill and experience, these specially-trained Los Angeles Firefighters will bring compassion and support to those who have been affected by the storm.

The men and women of the LAFD ask motorists to remain watchful for these and other convoys of emergency apparatus being deployed in advance of the storm, and to be mindful of the space necessary for them to safely maneuver on local roads and highways.

Pursuant of protocol, official public and media information regarding these LAFD Swift Water Rescue personnel *during deployment* will be provided by or through the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services or their designated representatives.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department