WEST LOS ANGELES - A leak of natural gas that seeped from one condominium to another late Monday evening in West Los Angeles, is suspected in causing an explosion that rocked the eighteen-unit building, causing a resident to sustain a leg injury.
The Los Angeles Fire Department was summoned at 10:12PM on August 27, 2012 to 1535 South Granville Avenue, where firefighters arrived quickly to discover evidence of an explosion within an upstairs unit of a two-story condominium building.
Two men inside the damaged unit told firefighters that after cooking, they had smelled natural gas in their kitchen - but were unable to identify the source. Minutes later, after one man left the room, a thunderous but fire-free explosion occurred behind the stove, fully toppling the appliance as well as a refrigerator nearby, and causing significant damage to walls shared by the kitchen and an adjacent room.
Amazingly, the man who had been standing closest to the kitchen, sustained only a laceration to his leg. The man in the adjacent room was uninjured. Both declined offered transportation to the hospital.
After securing the building's utilities and assuring there were no additional patients or hazards, firefighters determined that a natural gas-fed fireplace in the common wall of a unit below, had leaked the volatile product. Seeping upward and collecting in the upstairs wall space, the gas had apparently found a source of ignition.
A Southern California Gas Company representative joined officials from the City's Department of Building & Safety in confirming that hazards were abated before evaluating damage and determining if the building was fit for habitation. A damage estimate was not immediately available.
Dispatched Units: E59 E237 E37 T37 RA37 RA19 BC9 E19 AR2Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department