HOLLYWOOD HILLS - Firefighters filled the narrow, windy streets of this quiet Hollywood Hills neighborhood, where they battled intense flames, in an attempt to save a large, private residence on the 7300 block of Woodrow Wilson Drive. This 2000 square foot, single story residence, presented several challenges to those on-scene, including the dark, steep hillside on which it was built and the heavy, dense brush that surrounds it. Additionally, there were some traffic issues, as large fire apparatus attempted to negotiate these hills.
The initial dispatch, at just before 8:00 pm on Friday, September 9, 2011, brought the LAFD's water-dropping helicopters, as this was originally thought to have been a "brush fire." While water-drops were not an option in this residential neighborhood, our air resources did provide very valuable lighting to the incident, in the form of their "Nightsun" lamps. Visibility on the nearly black hillside had only been made worse due to the smokey conditions, and the lamps assisted in the illumination of several other hazards, including an empty, in-ground swimming pool located in the front yard.
After an exhausting battle that lasted nearly one and a half hours, 80 Firefighters officially declared a "knockdown" and the Incident Commander's initial fear of this fire extending into the surrounding brush, was not realized. This was due, in large part, to the strong efforts of all members on-scene. The incident took tremendous coordination, as most companies were forced to park their apparatus down the hill, and then hike back up, in order to go to work. Two LAFD members were sent to local hospitals for observation, after both sustained (at the time of this posting) not yet determined, illnesses/injuries.
The cause of this Friday night blaze remains under active investigation and the dollar loss is still being tabulated. The LAFD did not formally determine or identify the legal owner of the property at the time of the fire.
DISPATCHED UNITS: E76 RA876 E97 RA97 E227 T27 BC5 BC14 E29 E41 E27 E82 E86 E68 H6 H2 H1 DC3 T90 E290 E26 E261 T61 BC18 E3 RA41 EM9 BC11 RA27 RA82 EM14 E11 E215 T15 AR2 RM2 E88
Submitted by Matt Spence, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department