PACOIMA - A woman died and a man sustained injury, when a fast-moving fire swept through a Pacoima garage that had been converted to living quarters.
Reported at 8:56 AM on Wednesday April 4, 2012 to the rear of 12946 Sunburst Street in Pacoima, the fire brought 34 members of the Los Angeles Fire Department to battle heavy flames within a one-story 400 square-foot detached garage.
As firefighters raced with hoselines to battle the fire, they were met by an adult male resident who sustained second-degree burns to his face and hands in a reported attempt to rescue a woman trapped inside the burning building. While attacking intense flames, firefighters discovered the lifeless body of an adult female within the structure. Beyond medical help, she was declared dead at the scene.
The burned man was treated for his wounds and offered emotional support by LAFD Paramedics, before being taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital in fair condition.
The fire was fully extinguished in just sixteen minutes, and no other injuries were reported.
Los Angeles Firefighters found it essential to note the lack of any smoke alarm within the makeshift residential structure, which was also fitted with window security bars deemed "non-compliant" with the City's quick-release safety standard. There were no obvious non-fire factors to impair the woman's egress from the dwelling, which was not equipped with residential fire sprinklers.
A positive identification of the deceased woman, as well as the precise cause, time and manner of her death will be determined by the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner.
A formal determination of the structure's compliance with residential building codes will be a matter for the City's Department of Building & Safety. Monetary loss from the fire has been estimated at $20,000 ($15,000 structure & $5,000 contents), while the cause of the blaze remains under active investigation.
Dispatched Units: E98 RA898 RA77 E77 E289 T89 EM15 BC12 E81 RA98 AR2 AR11 AR17 AR9 AR39[video] [video] [video] [video] [video]
Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department