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The LAFD Unveils Its Preparation for Brush Season and Asks You a Question

Saturday, September 24, 2011 |

On Friday September 23, the news media gathered together at Chatsworth Reservoir, where Fire Chief Brian Cummings presented the resources that the City of Los Angeles has available to combat the threat of this year's Brush Fire season.

LAFD Displays Arsenal Against Wildfire
Local News Media at Chatsworth Helispot
The location was one of LA’s 32 helispots, which provided a beautiful backdrop of brush-covered, rugged terrain, steep canyons and rolling hills, that reminded those present just how vulnerable Southern California is to a major brush fire. The purpose of this meeting was two-fold...

First, to reassure YOU that the LAFD is prepared for this year's Brush Season.

LAFD Displays Arsenal Against Wildfire
Water Tender, Air-Crane, Crew 3, LAFD Copter
On display, were two of the Department's six helicopters that make up the LAFD's prestigious air fleet. Five of those "air ships" are capable of dropping hundreds of gallons of water and the other is used as a Command ship, strategically placed to direct these precise water drops.

In addition, the LAFD utilizes an Erickson Air-Crane, which is a wildfire, heavy-lift helicopter, capable of providing superior aerial fire suppression services during the peak of our Brush Fire season. The Erickson Air-Crane is available this year from August 15 through January 2012.

Available to meet first hand, was the hard working and cost effective "Crew 3," comprised of LAFD Cadets. These volunteers dedicate themselves to clearing brush from hillsides and fire roads, as well as creating fire breaks throughout the city.

Also present, were one of the LAFD’s three Bulldozers, a LAFD Dozer Transport and a LAFD Water Tender. This Heavy Equipment is used to cut brush along the tops of LA’s many ridges and hillsides. They create fire breaks and directly attack the fire by smothering its progression.

However, it is not just about the equipment. It's the uniformed firefighters from your 106 neighborhood fire stations that make you safe. They constantly train and prepare themselves for the many emergencies they face, including the threat of a major brush fire.

The Second purpose of this gathering was to ask a question:
"Just how ready are YOU?"

The LAFD promotes the "Ready, Set, Go" preparedness campaign, and asks you to:
  • Be Ready: Prepare your property. Cut back the ornamental brush around your home and allow 200 feet of clearance.
  • Get Set: Prepare your family. Have a plan for what to do in the event of an emergency.
  • Go: Be ready to go when you are told to evacuate. Once you leave, stay away until uniformed personnel say it is safe to return.
LAFD Displays Arsenal Against Wildfire
Fire Chief Brian Cummings Addressing Media
Chief Cummings stated, "I challenge every resident of Los Angeles to have an emergency plan and to discuss the plan with each member of your family. This is especially important for those residents who live in or near brush areas."

The Los Angeles Fire Department wants to reassure you they are prepared. It is now up to you to prepare yourself, your family and your home.


Submitted by Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Is Having a BBQ Fundraiser for a Good Cause and You're Invited

Thursday, September 22, 2011 |

Please join Los Angeles Firefighters in a barbecue fundraiser for the daughter of Department Member Firefighter Eric D. Shepherd from Fire Station 29, whom passed away on July 18, 2011. Sadly firefighter Shepherd left behind a beautiful young daughter, Sarai.

We welcome your family to stand alongside ours at a Memorial BBQ in Firefighter Shepherd’s honor, in order to raise funds for Sarai’s future education. The members of Fire station 29 would like to warmly invite the public as well as the media to participate in this worthy cause and celebrate the life of our fallen Brother, Eric “Shep” Shepherd.

DATE: Saturday, September 24, 2011

TIME: 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

LOCATION: Fire Station 29 - 4029 Wilshire Boulevard Los Angeles, 90010

Unable to attend but still want to show your support:
The Sarai Shepherd Educational Fund
Acct# 10000758996
c/o L.A. Firemen's Credit Union
815 Colorado Boulevard Los Angeles, CA 90041


Submitted by Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

The Ride for 9-11: "Mission Accomplished!!"

Tuesday, September 13, 2011 |

They endured extreme temperatures, brutal terrain and thousands of miles, but the participants in the "Ride for 9-11" have beaten it all and the LAFD would like to congratulate them on an absolutely incredible journey!



This group of fine athletes pulled into New York City, as scheduled on Friday, September 9, 2011 and were greeted by their "brothers" from the NYFD with cheers and admiration. "Brothers" you ask? Indeed. These riders were also a group of Firefighters from in and around Southern California and the common bond that exists through the fire service, was certainly strengthened through their efforts. In six weeks time, their goal of cycling 3,308 hard, road miles cross-country, was all done for a cause that unites Firefighters everywhere.

Ride for 9/11 Arrives
This charitable endeavor was developed to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project and The Leary Firefighter Foundation and also to honor the 343 firefighters who died in the collapse of the twin towers on Sept. 11, 2001. In the process, they have also served as emissaries of Los Angeles and the Fire Service.

Along the way, many friends were made, as they literally traveled "station to station." The riders were housed along their trek in Fire stations across the country in such places as Joplin, MO, Oklahoma City, OK, Shanksville, PA, the Pentagon and many others. Each, such stop, has made quite an impression on the team. One of several riders representing the LAFD, Jason Teter, stated, "Suddenly it hit me...I'm a small part in a really big thing. I felt a sense of honor. We were all traveling the same road for the same cause. We are paying our respects to those who gave everything to keep us safe, and free."

We are extremely proud of our "bothers" and welcome all of you to learn more about their journey, donate to their cause or simply send a note, by please visiting:



ridefor9-11.org



Submitted by Matt Spence, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Tough Blaze in Hollywood Hills Home Injures Two Firefighters

Saturday, September 10, 2011 |

2 Firefighters Injured in Hollywood Hills House FireHOLLYWOOD 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.

(video)




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.
2 Firefighters Injured in Hollywood Hills House Fire
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

Cause Determined in 40 Acre Mandeville Canyon Wildfire

Thursday, September 08, 2011 |

BRENTWOOD - More than 200 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel, bolstered with a regional response of firefighters by ground and air, pushed back flames from a Labor Day wildfire before it could damage any homes in the brush covered terrain near Mandeville Canyon west of the Sepulveda Pass.
LAFD and Allied Agencies Battle 40-acre 'Mandeville' Wildfire
With numerous telephone calls reporting the fire on Monday, September 5, 2011 at 4:10 PM, teams of firefighters responded to the 3600 block of Mandeville Canyon Road where they discovered fast-moving fire in vegetation east of Mandeville Canyon and north of the Mountain Gate Country Club.

As dozens of ground crews scrambled through rugged terrain to attack the blaze, a synchronized aerial offense with fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters soon stemmed the fire's advance, holding the fire's impact to forty acres of dense vegetation.

Structures were threatened, however due to the swift and aggressive action of firefighters, none were damaged, and no civilians were injured.


LAFD and Allied Agencies Battle 40-acre 'Mandeville' Wildfire
Two male firefighters, one from LAFD and the other from California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation Camp Crew 16, suffered heat related injuries & were transported to a local hospital in fair to serious condition.

The fire was 100% contained Wednesday afternoon September 7th, however f
irefighters maintained a heavy presence and kept a close eye on the burn area throughout the four days, ensuring the the volatile vegetation would not reignite, to keep residents safe.

The cause of the fire was determined accidental in nature, and was attributed to two young males smoking.

Dispatched LAFD Units: E19 E237 T37 BC9 E64 E59 H4 E23 E84 E292 T92 E85 H0F BC18 E68 H3 E95 E83 BP94 BP44 BP28 WT77 H1 H2 H6 E62 E43 E58 E99 E71 BC15 DC3 E94 E269 T69 E13 RT40 E43 E99 BC15 E58 E68 E71 E62 E94 E66 E48 E21 BC17 SU1 RA19 E5 E93 E58 E71 BC15 E37 E63 E5 E26 E61 E33 E39 AR2 H2 H6 BC17 DC2 E90 BC5 E109 T90 E290 RA867 E10 E15 RT59 E66 E93 E89 WT77 RA909 DC2 DC3 BP35 WT88 E48 E27 E11 E2 E12 E67 E34 E100 E6 E14 RA69 RP88 H1 H6 E90 E17 E98 E29 BC13 E87 T3 E203 E21 E37 E63 E3 BC9 E26 E85 E10 E5 BC10 WT88 BP109 RT59 H4 RA19 RA69 E2 E12 E15 BC9 E33 E61 E88 RT59 RA867 CREW 3

Submitted by Brian Humphrey & Erik Scott, Spokesmen
Los Angeles Fire Department

Mayor Nominates Brian Cummings as New Los Angeles Fire Chief

Wednesday, September 07, 2011 |

The Mayor of Los Angeles announced today, the nomination of Brian L. Cummings to the position of Fire Chief, effective Wednesday, September 7, 2011.

Chief Cummings, a 31 year veteran of the Los Angeles Fire Department, previously held the Chief of Staff position before being named the Interim Fire Chief in July of this year.

Chief Cummings has expressed his intent to maintain the high level of service performed by members of the Los Angeles Fire Department...

“I thank the hardworking, talented men and women of the Department - the sworn, civilian and volunteer personnel that make this organization great. I thank the Mayor for his confidence in me and for his commitment to public safety. I also thank the City Council for their commitment to prioritizing any increases in City revenue and directing them back to this Department to expand resources. Finally, I want to thank the Fire Commission for their continued guidance and partnership.

I can assure residents of Los Angeles that the LAFD will continue to deliver the high level of service to which they are accustomed, and that we are proud to provide.

I look forward to leading the Los Angeles Fire Department in accomplishing our mission of protecting lives and property and fostering economic growth."

Courtesy of TheCityMaven


Background

Fire Chief Brian L. Cummings is a 31-year veteran of the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) with an exemplary record as a Firefighter, Engineer, Captain, Battalion Chief, Assistant Chief and Chief of Staff, Interim Fire Chief and now The Fire Chief .

Chief Cummings joined the LAFD as a Firefighter on February 10, 1980, and was promoted to Engineer in 1988. Chief Cummings then earned promotions to Captain I in 1993 and Captain II in 2000.

In 2003, Chief Cummings took command of LAFD’s Battalion 13, managing five Fire Stations in South Los Angeles. As a Commander of Battalion 13, Chief Cummings maintained strong relationships with various community organizations, clubs and churches, as well as with the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) and the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

In 2005, Chief Cummings assumed command of the Recruit Training Section of the Los Angeles Fire Department. During his tenure as the Recruit Training Officer, he was instrumental in the development of the modular training facility located at the Frank Hotchkin’s Memorial Training Center, while managing training facilities in the San Fernando Valley, Downtown Los Angeles and San Pedro.

In 2007, Chief Cummings took command of Battalion 6, in the Harbor area, overseeing operations at nine Fire Stations responsible for fire protection in the Port of Los Angeles, three major refineries and a host of heavy commercial occupancies. As the Battalion Commander of Battalion 6, Chief Cummings served as the principal liaison to the United States Coast Guard, Port Authorities, the Chambers of Commerce, the shipping industry, Los Angeles County Fire Department and Long Beach Fire Department.

In 2009, Chief Cummings assumed command of LAFD’s Battalion 1, managing five Task Force stations in the Downtown area of Los Angeles. As the Battalion Commander of the Metropolitan area of Downtown L.A., Chief Cummings nurtured strong community relations with the various chambers of commerce and local community organizations.

In 2010, Chief Cummings was assigned to the Planning Section of the Los Angeles Fire Department where he oversaw the Fire Chief’s staff and assisted with the management of the day to day functions of the Los Angeles Fire Department. As the Planning Chief, he coordinated research projects, staff studies and formulated the goals and objectives for the Department.

In December of 2010, Chief Cummings was promoted to the position of Assistant Fire Chief and was appointed as the Chief of Staff. As the Chief of Staff his primary responsibility was to serve as the Executive Assistant to the Fire Chief. Chief Cummings assisted the Fire Chief in the planning and implementation of short and long range goals of the Department. He interacted with the Mayor’s office, members of the City Council, various civic leaders and Department Command staff.

Then on Monday, July 11, 2011 he was appointed as Interim Fire Chief and as of Wednesday, September 7, 2011 Brian Cummings was nominated as the Fire Chief of Los Angeles Fire Department.

Chief Cummings was born and raised in Los Angeles. His father was a 30 year veteran of the Los Angeles Fire Department. He graduated from Loyola High School and attended both West Los Angeles College and the University of California at Los Angeles. He is married and is the proud father of two beautiful daughters.

Submitted by Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Large-Scale HazMat Averted on Rail Lines Near the Port

Tuesday, September 06, 2011 |

LAFD Squad 48WILMINGTON - An inbound freight-train from Texas was discovered to be prematurely offloading one if its "intermodal" railcars, earlier today. The "stable, but flammable liquid" was identified as "Pentanol" and was seen pouring from what was described as a "small crease in its belly," at a rate of approximately 3-5 gallons a minute. The leak was discovered by a passerby, as the train sat idle, awaiting inspection. The cause of the leak was to be investigated by rail authorities.

The incident warranted a full response by the LAFD's Hazardous Materials (HazMat) Squads from the surrounding areas, including Squads 48, 95 and 21 as well as nearly 60 Firefighters. Upon arrival, Battalion Chief Gomez made the swift decision to close the 1300 block of North Alameda Street to through traffic from Pacific Coast Highway to Sepulveda Boulevard, as a precaution. The mostly industrial business area, however, did not require evacuation.

With the Squads in place and now ready for entry, the other elements of the HazMat response, including Decontamination, Fire Suppression, Rescue and a Medical Component, were also deployed. After being able to assess the problem up-close, the experts quickly determined it was a leak that could not be stopped. The Unified Command, with representatives from LACo Health & HazMat, LAPD, DOT and the Union Pacific Railroad, decided it best to bring in private "vacuum trucks" to offload the remaining product. These trucks were requested early, having anticipated the need and thereby reducing the wait time.

When the incident was finally declared static and the hazard abated, nearly 5 hours later, a total of some 4700 gallons of "Pentanol" were offloaded. Despite the hazards involved, including the 90 degree heat beating down on all members suited-up in their specialized equipment, there were no injuries or illnesses reported. More good news was the leak required minimal clean-up and had little environmental impact, as most if the product quickly evaporated.

DISPATCH UNITS:
E38 RA38 RA36 E40 T48 E248 SQ48 E94 EM9 BC6 E36 RA848 HM94 E95
T95 E295 SQ95 E85 FT36 EM6 RT40 RA857 BC13 E88 E49 SQ21 RA15 E85

Submitted by Matt Spence, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Firework Sparked Blaze Scorches Ten Acres in Sun Valley

Monday, September 05, 2011 |

LAFD and Allied Agencies Hold Sun Valley Wildfire to Ten Acres. © Photo by Rick McClureSUN VALLEY - Los Angeles area firefighters responded by ground and air to protect homes from damage, as a fast moving wildfire scorched nearly ten acres of a Sun Valley hillside on Labor Day.

On Monday, September 5, 2011 at 2:22 PM, the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a brush fire near 8576 Vine Valley Drive in Sun Valley.

With smoke visible more than six miles distant, allied agencies, including the Los Angeles County Fire Department, Burbank Fire Department and firefighters from the Angeles National Forest, soon joined the battle in an area considered a mutual threat zone.

LAFD and Allied Agencies Hold Sun Valley Wildfire to Ten Acres. © Photo by Rick McClureTwo water-dropping LAFD helicopters and an Erickson Air-Crane helitanker on seasonal deployment to the City of Los Angeles, were able to flank the flames with great precision, as ground crews - including 147 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel, worked to stretch hoselines and battle flames across the rolling terrain.

Despite the fire being confined within two hours to less ten acres, the tinder-dry brush could not be declared fully extinguished for nearly eight hours, as hand crews worked the entire edge of the fire with hand tools to assure the fire was out.

Los Angeles Fire Department investigators suspect the non-injury blaze in the Verdugo Mountains was sparked by children playing illegally with fireworks.


Dispatched LAFD Units: E89 T89 E24 T60 E60 E260 E298 E98 T98 H0D H0E BC14 BC12 E76 H3 H4 RA90 E7 E90 E77 E81 E86 E102 E39 DC3 EM15 BC10 E239 T39 E275 T75 E91 E41 E278 T78 H733 BP109 WT77 BP44 AR2 RA70 RT59 E10 E11 E63 E39 E88 DC2 BC14

(slideshow)

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Wharf Fire Brings Response by Land and by Sea

Friday, September 02, 2011 |

U.S. COAST GUARD BASE, SAN PEDRO - Late in the evening, on Tuesday, August 30, 2011, LAFD resources stationed down in the Port of Los Angeles were dispatched to a reported "Wharf Fire." The heavy response came by both land and by sea, as Fireboats 1, 2 and 5 all swiftly cruised through the Port, while the balance of the assigned resources arrived by more traditional routes from all around      San Pedro.

The wharf was located on the United States Coast Guard (USCG) Base and with very limited personnel actually living and stationed there, it was quickly realized by those on-scene, they were in need of help. The call was made to several of the emergency agencies that serve the Port. Once on-scene, there were issues that needed to be addressed by the Incident Commanders quickly. One, was a large obstacle that impeded the initial fire attack, a 175 foot-long USCG ship (a "buoy tender") docked at the large wharf. Reports indicated that it may have taken as long as two hours to reposition the ship. Another, was the seat of the fire, which was found to be deep under the wharf, making access extremely difficult.

Rather than risk further damage to the wharf or the USCG Base, Battalion Chief Ray Gomez, in Unified Command with the USCG and the Los Angeles Port Police, directed a fire attack that came from both above and below. Divers off the Fireboats suited-up and dove the dark waters with "under-wharf" firefighting nozzles to handle the bulk of the fire, while hoselines were advanced from the Engine Companies above, so as not to allow for any extension. The smaller Fireboats (Boats 1 and 5) allowed for maneuverability, but it was the combined fire attack by all resources on-scene, that finally put the fire to rest.

The stubborn fire took 46 total Firefighters and Divers, nearly one and half hours to fully extinguish. Despite the extremely hazardous operations involved, no injuries were reported and the fire was confined to a relatively small portion of the wharf.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined and the dollar loss, not yet tabulated.

DISPATCH UNITS:
BT1 E40 BT2 BT5 E36 RA36 E112 RA112 E248 T48 T85 E285 EM6 BC6 BC13 E64 



Submitted by Matt Spence
Spokesman, Los Angeles Fire Department

Firefighters Rescue Adult Male Found at Bottom of Pool

Thursday, September 01, 2011 |

VALLEY GLEN - On Monday, August 28, 2011, the LAFD responded to a "near drowning" incident on another hot, valley afternoon. Battalion 14 arrived first on scene, immediately followed by Task Force and Rescue 60. The Chief witnessed, first-hand, a very coordinated and all-out effort to save a life, as members literally sprinted to the backyard of this private residence. Once there, they discovered an approximate 28 year-old male lifeless, at the bottom of the pool. 
Los Angeles Firefighters Rescue Man from Bottom of North Hollywood Pool

Without hesitation, Firefighters jumped into the pool to make a rescue, while others assisted by delivering appropriate medical equipment to the backyard. The patient was removed from the pool, pulse-less and non-breathing. Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) was initiated instantly, as were other advanced life saving (ALS) measures. Members on-scene worked quickly and efficiently and demonstrated the skills of highly trained professionals. As a result, members of Task Force and Rescue 60 were able to regain both a pulse and respirations prior to his arrival at the hospital.

In recent weeks, the LAFD has experienced and unfortunate rash of "near drowning" incidents.Los Angeles Firefighters Rescue Man from Bottom of North Hollywood Pool As our extreme weather continues, even into the Fall and especially as we head into another holiday weekend, your Los Angeles Fire Department encourages you to please exercise extreme caution whenever in-and-around any body of water.

These unfortunate incidents offer us the opportunity to again highlight the importance of learning CPR, as well as our "Pool Safely" campaign. Please review these simple steps... they will help save lives!



LAFD and MySafe:LA - 
"WaterSmart" Public Service Announcement

WaterSmart:LA :60 PSA 720x405 from David & Cameron Barrett on Vimeo.


Submitted by
Matt Spence
Spokesman, Los Angeles Fire Department