Downtown Apartment Fire Claims One Life

Thursday, October 14, 2010 |

On Thursday, October 14, 2010 at 9:58 AM, 6 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 2 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 1 Arson Unit, 1 EMS Battalion Captain, 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, under the direction of Battalion Chief Antoine McKnight responded to a Structure Fire at 622 South Wall Street in Downtown Los Angeles.

Firefighters arrived within three minutes to a three-story modern apartment building with fire in one unit on the first floor. While attacking the flames, an unconscious 62 year-old male was discovered on the floor of his small Studio Apartment. He sustained 2nd and 3rd degree burns to approximately 50% of his body, in addition to a severe respiratory injury. In critical condition, he was treated by LAFD Paramedics, who transported him to Los Angeles County USC Medical Center. Sadly, after the patient arrived at the hospital, he died as a result of his injuries.

It took Firefighters just nine minutes to extinguish the blaze, but not before it caused $45,000 ($40,000 structure & $5,000 contents) loss to the approximate 150 square-foot residence. Firefighters determined smoke alarms were present in the home. There were no obvious physical factors impairing egress, and the 29 year-old residence was not equipped with fire sprinklers. The fire was determined to be the result of the occupant smoking while utilizing oxygen therapy via a nasal cannula.

Submitted by Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department


Anonymous said...

Since when is 62 considered elderly?

LAFD Media and Public Relations said...

Anonymous 8:39,

Thanks for visiting and sharing your thoughts on the LAFD News & Information blog.

First and foremost, please know our colleague's use of the phrase was not an intentional or overt statement of ageism.

Generally speaking, we find ourselves most often using the term "senior" in our blog articles (when appropriate and/or perceived as beneficial) in conveying a demographic.

While there is clearly no standard that defines elderly, we would rarely (if at all) consider the term in describing those less than the 'historic' (and now largely flexible) retirement age of 65.

Indeed with a good number of firefighters and other active members of the workforce being age 62, it is probably not by itself a good definition.

Rather than elderly, we most often find ourselves using elder, senior or even older man/woman in describing the septua- and octo- and nongenarians we serve.

Additionally, such phrases as ill, frail, mobility/cognitively impaired and other descriptors help convey more specific issues related to our mission than age alone.

In closing, please accept our thanks for bringing this small but important issue to our attention. Erik, Devin and I will discuss this matter soon.

Respectfully Yours in Safety and Service,

Brian Humphrey
Public Service Officer
Los Angeles Fire Department

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