LAFD's 9-1-1 Dispatch Center Made Historical Move

Tuesday, February 28, 2012 |

 Los Angeles Fire Department's (LAFD) dispatch center, known for it's motto, "It all starts here", made a historic move today. During the early morning hours of February 28, 2012, 9-1-1 call taking and resource dispatching moved locations from the Operations Control Division (OCD) at City Hall East to the new Metropolitan Fire Communications (MFC) facility at 500 E. Temple Street.

LAFD's "New" Dispatch Center, Metropolitan Fire Communications (MFC)Now that the the transition to MFC is complete, OCD has become the Department’s back-up dispatching facility and the radio call sign "OCD" is no longer operative. At one in the morning, the strategically planned five hour radio transfer was made. Now, all inbound and outbound radio transmissions will use the call sign, “Metro.” No other changes to radio terminology, resource dispatch algorithms, or operations will occur.

In addition, LAFD's Public Service Office (PSO) made the same geographical migration. Matt Spence, Brian Humphrey, and Erik Scott sincerely appreciate the patience of all during this exciting and elaborate transition, as they have had decreased availability at times. As for members of the media, the phone number for the PSO EPI-Center will remain the same, for the time being. We and look forward to better serving you from our new location.

Construction of the Metro Fire Communications facility which includes Fire Station 4 and the City’s Emergency Operations Center, began on January 19, 2006 as part of Prop “F” funding. Although the 120,000 square foot facility has been up and running for the past couple of years, the Metro Fire Communications sophisticated 9-1-1 telephone and dispatch equipment installation was just recently completed.

LAFD's "Old" Dispatch Center, Operations Control Division (OCD

The move to the new Metro Fire Communications facility involves many City agencies, Vendors, and private contractors. Planning for the actual transition from City Hall East to the MFC has been in the works for the last several months, which includes the training of dispatchers and staff for familiarization of new state of the art equipment. As of February 29, 2012, the Coldwater back-up dispatch center will no longer be operational. The Department appreciates your interest and cooperation in this historic move.

Some have recently said, the previous commonly used ending radio transmission, "OCD Clear", now takes on a new meaning.

Submitted by Administration & Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Inside the LAFD Arson Squad - Where Science Meets Fire in the Pursuit of Justice

Thursday, February 23, 2012 |

The work of Los Angeles Fire Department Arson Investigators takes place 24-hours a day. It's a rarely seen world of courage against arsonists, commitment to justice - and compassion for the victims of a crime known to cause senseless loss and suffering.

KCAL9's Melissa McCarty offers a rare look behind the scenes of the LAFD Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section...


You can learn more about the LAFD Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section by following them on Twitter and Facebook. Should you have a question, concern or tip regarding the crime of arson in Los Angeles, give them a call at (213) 893-9800.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

40 Years Ago: Between Arsonists and Attackers, Widrig & Currie Never Had a Chance

Wednesday, February 22, 2012 |

LAFD Station 33 circa 1972
On February 22, 1972 evil cascaded upon and surrounded LAFD Engine Company 33, in a night of sorrow that has not been paralleled in the history of the fabled Los Angeles firehouse.

In the days that would follow, Los Angeles Fireman Paul 'Randy' Widrig would be remembered as a man who "...knew and did more, always to the best of his ability, helping people in need."

Fire Department Chaplain James Dayen would later eulogize Randy's colleague, Fireman Theodore A. Currie as "a portrait of a fireman... in spirit, loyalty and dedication with the gift of inspiration."

The pair of hard-working civil servants however, didn't stand a chance as both arsonists and attackers - who remain at large - sealed their fate in one of the most troubling nights in Los Angeles Fire Department history.

Los Angeles Firefighters would feel the impact of the greater alarm blaze for decades to come, as they struggled to support Widrig's young widow and orphaned infant, as well as Currie's widow and three young sons.

                            Bystanders Harass Rescue While . . .

Arson Fire Kills Two City Firefighters

On the evening of February 22, 1972, two firefighters died in a greater alarm blaze in South Central Los Angeles. Firefighters Theodore Currie, 34, a ten year veteran and Paul Widrig, 24, with 18 months service, were killed when a mezzanine floor collapsed and buried them under four to five feet of debris. The coroner's office announced their deaths were due to suffocation.

The building, a large one story 150-by-75 foot warehouse was well involved with fire when the first of thirteen fire companies arrived shortly before midnight.

The victims were among four fire fighters from Fire Station 33 who entered the rear of the structure with a 2 1/2" inch hose line in an effort to cut the advance of the fire. The other two men, Capt. Sam Diannitto (former Vice-President of Local 112) and Fireman Otto McClung narrowly escaped without injury.

It took fire fighters over an hour of grueling work to recover the bodies of their comrades. Heat from the flames was so intense that it collapsed steel trusses in the building and buckled walls which further hampered rescue attempts.

ARSON AND HARASSMENT

Investigators said that the fire was deliberately set after the building had been burglarized. During rescue attempts, firefighters were attacked with rocks and bottles hurled by a militant group which gathered at the scene.

RITES HELD

In separate memorial services on February 25, 1972, Los Angeles City Firefighters honored their two fallen colleagues killed in the performance of their duties.

A morning service was conducted for Theodore Currie in Downey with approximately 500 mourners in attendance. Currie is survived by his widow Geraldine, and three sons. Steven 15; Craig 13, and Kent 11.

Afternoon services were held for Paul Widrig in Newhall. Widrig is survived by his 19 year old widow Deborah and an infant son. Also Widrig's father, Clyde, a retired policeman, and a brother, Clyde Jr., presently a Los Angeles Policeman.
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To learn more about our Brothers Widrig and Currie, and others who have made the ultimate sacrifice in their service to the City, we encourage you to visit the Los Angeles Fire Department Museuem and Fallen Firefighter Memorial in Hollywood or to click:



Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

65 Years Ago: Deadly Los Angeles Blast a Proving Ground for Live TV

Monday, February 20, 2012 |

With rapid change taking place in old and new media alike, it seems fitting that we take a look back at how a brilliant scientist named Landsberg, a legendary broadcaster named Lane and gallant members of your Los Angeles Fire Department made history in our City, 65 years ago...

L.A. Scene
The City Then and Now
By Cecilia Rasmussen

Deadly Blast a Proving Ground for Live TV

Since the film industry moved west shortly after the turn of the century, Los Angeles has been on the cutting edge of what has come to be called the information age. And, though it is seldom recalled, the first convergence of live television and disaster -- a staple of today's TV news -- occurred in response to the city's most deadly industrial accident.


Television made its American debut at the 1939 World's Fair in New York. Within a year, Paramount had dispatched the brilliant Klaus Landsberg to build an experimental TV station -- W6XYZ -- in Los Angeles. Landsberg, who had invented a widely used FM radio receiver while in his teens, fled his native Germany shortly after the Third Reich classified his pioneering work on radar and sonar as a national secret. In 1936, however, Landsberg had participated in experimental television broadcasts of the Berlin Olympics.

He arrived in Los Angeles with an unequaled technical background and an abiding belief -- gleaned from his Berlin experiment -- that live television had the power to fundamentally alter people's understanding of the world around them.

There were 350 home television sets in Los Angeles on Feb. 20, 1947, when Landsberg's system was put to its first great test... (read more...)

Historical Reference:

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Injury, Death and Destruction Follow Shooting, Major Emergency Fire

Friday, February 17, 2012 |

HOLLYWOOD - Gun-shots fired in a relatively quiet neighborhood today, resulted in multiple victims, a Major Emergency Structure Fire and two deaths. No Fire or Police were injured.
Multi Shooting at Deadly House Fire in HollywoodAt 12:41 PM on Thursday, February 16, 2012, LAPD Officers accompanied by Los Angeles Firefighters responded to a reported shooting at 517 North Harvard Boulevard. Upon arrival, they were greeting by three adults: one 34 year-old male and two 38 year-old females, all suffering from apparent gunshot wounds. A domestic dispute in the nearly 100 year-old single family dwelling, may have precipitated the gunfire. Acting without hesitation, the Officers and Firefighters rapidly extracted all three individuals from the residence, before discovering a quickly developing fire at the rear of the structure.

Adding to the chaos, were reports that the shooter was still in the residence and may have been holding one additional victim. The potential of this incident brought a swift and heavy response, with 150 Firefighters pouring into the Hollywood neighborhood.

The inherent risks of the incident were carefully considered by the Unified Command. With a reported shooter-at-large and a now, fully-developed structure fire, the safety and security of all personnel became the primary objective. With Firefighters unable make an interior fire-attack and untenable conditions in the structure eliminating the probability of survival, it was determined the best course of action was to let the fire burn itself out.

Hoselines were placed on each side of the approximate 2,600 square-foot home, as were armed LAPD Officers to provide force protection to Firefighters. The strategy was to prevent the fire from extending to the adjacent exposures by simply controlling it.

Full-extinguishment came 2 hours and 30 minutes later. Unfortunately, the discovery of two bodies also came, by way of our LAFD Cadaver Search Dog and its handler. They were aided by two others canines from Ventura County Fire Department. One of the bodies is believed to have been the shooter, of unknown age. Both bodies will be positively identified by the LA County Department of Coroner, as will the exact cause of death.
  
Multi Shooting at Deadly House Fire in HollywoodThe three injured adults were all transported in critical condition to local hospitals. Both the fire and the crime scene are part of an active, joint investigation by the LAFD's Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section and the LAPD. While dollar-loss estimates were not yet available, the structure was a total loss. There were no reported injuries to LAFD or LAPD personnel.

Dispatched Units:
E11 RA6 RA20 T29 E29 E229 EM11 BC5 E61 RA82 RA41 RA56 EM2 EM9 E82 E235 T35 E227 BC11 BC2 BC13 DC2 E27 T27 UR3 RA3 HR56 UR88 BC1 UR27 RA827 E211 T11 E6 E15 E220 T20 SQ21 CM3 RA4 AR7 RA52 RA78 H2 E21 E3 E12 E202 T2 E226 T26 EA1 RT59 E56 AR1 RA867 RA867 E90 AR3 AR10 E91 RM2 SU1 AR36 E2 T12 E212 T3 E203



Submitted by Matt Spence, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Major Emergency Structure Fire in Van Nuys Injures 2 LA Firefighters

Wednesday, February 15, 2012 |

VAN NUYS - Over 125 Los Angeles Firefighters extinguished an enormous fire in a 150' x 100' one-story commercial building in just under two hours, where two Los Angeles Firefighters were injured. 

LAFD Battles Huge Fire In Van NuysJust after 5:00 pm on Wednesday February 15th 2012, firefighters arrived to find fire blowing out one unit of a strip mall, located at 6600 North Van Nuys Boulevard. Waves of additional firefighters were requested.

Extensive amounts of smoke could be seen for miles as it lingered low to the ground due to a heavy marine layer and slowly pushed south by light winds.

The structure located was of older construction with a conventional roof, parapet, and a common attic space. The open area under the roof allowed fire to rapidly spread across the tops of three business before hitting large division walls, halting the advancement of the flames.

Shortly into the extended battle, firefighters switched into a defensive attack. Truck Companies quickly finished cutting holes on the roof with chainsaws. Fire blew through the roof forcing firefighters to rapidly exit. Firefighters on the ground used large 2 1/2" hose-lines along with ladder pipe operations, where copious amounts of water was sprayed from the end of extended aerial ladder trucks, capable of 2000 gallons per minute, into the structure.

LAFD Battles Huge Fire In Van NuysThree separate stores were damaged, doing business as: First Bargin Center, Birrieria Luita, and El Pantalon.

The blaze was fully extinguished in one hour and 53 minutes before any adjacent buildings were damaged.

Two firefighters received minor injuries and were transported to local hospitals in fair condition.

The dollar loss is still being tabulated and the cause is under active investigation.

Dispatched Units: E239 T39 E81 E102 E288 E88 T88 RA88 RA889 EM14 BC10 BC14 E100 E39 RA39 E289 E89 T89 E7 E90 RA100 E83 RA83 E278 T78 E298 T98 E273 T73 DC3 SQ21 EM15 EM17 EM9 BC12 UR88 BC5 AR2 RT83 EA1 RM2 E87 E60 E93 E287 T87 E305 T105 E237 T37 BC17 BC18 AR23 RA7 RA99 RA60 MD1

Submitted by Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Arrest of Man Alleged to be Responsible for Death of LA Firefighter

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LOS ANGELES - One day shy of the one year anniversary of the line of duty death of Los Angeles Firefighter Glenn L. Allen, an arrest and filing of charges against a suspect was made.

Candlelight Vigil for Fallen Los Angeles Firefighter Glenn AllenThe fatal fire occurred in the late evening of Wednesday February 16, 2011 at 1546 North Viewsite Drive in the Hollywood Hills area of Los Angeles. Firefighters arrived to find fire in the exterior wall of the structure, which then ran the walls and entered a concealed space in the ceiling. During the firefighting operations failure of the ceiling assembly constructed of drywall, wood framing, and water soaked insulation, resulted in a partial ceiling collapse, causing injury to four Los Angeles Firefighters and two Los Angeles County Firefighters, trapping three.

Sadly Firefighter Allen later succumbed to his injuries at 12:15 PM on Friday, February 18, 2011 at Cedars Sinai Medical Center. Glenn L. Allen was a Firefighter/Paramedic for over 36 years and last served at Fire Station 97. He was just two years away from retiring.

The Arson Investigation determined that the fire started at a gas fed fireplace type burner assembly.
Los Angeles Firefighter Glenn Allen Laid to Rest
A formal and detailed investigation ensued and now a year-long joint investigation between LAFD's Arson Unit that also included the assistance of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives (ATF) along with LAPD's Robbery-Homicide Division (RHD) has now been capped off with a recent arrest.

In the evening of Saturday, February 11th 2012, Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) detectives with the assistance of agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrested Gerhard Albert Becker, 48 of Palma De Mallorca, Spain as he exited a flight at Los Angeles International Airport. Becker, a German national, was identified as the suspect in the death of Firefighter Glen Allen, due to improper construction of the home and appliances. Mr. Becker the architect, home builder, and homeowner has been charged with one count of 192(b) PC, Involuntary Manslaughter, and is being held on 2 million dollars bail. He has plead not guilty.

At a press conference on Wednesday, February 15, 2012, LAFD Fire Chief Brian Cummings stated, "I want to thank the members of the LAFD Arson Counter-Terrorism Section, Los Angeles Police Department Robbery Homicide Division, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the FBI for their diligence in pursuing this case and filing these charges."


Submitted by Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

The Los Angeles Fire Department Announces 'Envision Our LAFD'

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 |

From the desk of Los Angeles Fire Chief Brian Cummings...

LAFD Fire Chief Brian CummingsThe Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) has embarked on an innovative strategic planning process, and I invite you to join us.

"Envision Our LAFD" is an engaging, inclusive strategy development process that will provide an opportunity for LAFD personnel, City Officials, Departments and the public to participate in the development of a decision framework and roadmap to help us achieve our vision of becoming the premier world-class all-risk life safety service provider. With your help, we will identify the core factors that give us life by examining when we have been at our best and bring our positive past with us as we move into the future.

Active participation by all is key to our success. We purposefully included the word "our" in the strategic planning theme because we recognize that LAFD cannot be successful without the active support of those we serve.

There are two opportunities for you to become involved:

Community Focus Group Participant: Share your observations and experiences through a focus group session with a Department representative. This session will take no more than 90 minutes to complete. Your feedback will be presented to the Strategic Planning Leadership Team and I during March 2012, with will be completed by the end of May 2012.

Participation is limited to the first 12 persons that RSVP for each location. Focus groups will meet at the following Neighborhood Fire Stations from 6:30PM - 8:00PM:

Tuesday, February 21, 2012
Los Angeles Fire Station #64
118 W 108th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90061

Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Los Angeles Fire Station #89
7063 Laurel Canyon Boulevard
North Hollywood, CA 91605

Thursday, February 23, 2012
Los Angeles Fire Station #94
4470 Coliseum Street
Los Angeles, CA 90016

Friday, February 24, 2012
Los Angeles Fire Station #59
11505 West Olympic Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90064

We encourage you to click here now to submit your reservation request for one of the above locations... or visit: http://svy.mk/Envision_Our_LAFD

"Envision Our LAFD" Summit Participant: In addition, I invite those who participate in the Community Focus Group to engage in further conversation during our Department-wide one-day "Envision Our LAFD" Summit on April 11, 2012. The outcome of the Summit will be the foundation on which we will construct the Department’s strategy.

Thank you for your interest in, and support of the LAFD. I look forward to sharing the results of "Envision Our LAFD" with you!

Sincerely,

Brian L. Cummings
Fire Chief

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Here are answers to some common questions...

What is the format of the focus group(s)?

Between 8 and 12 people will participate in a facilitated discussion about their experiences with the LAFD and/or what their desired interactions with the Department would look like. An outside consultant will facilitate the conversation, which will be recorded either by someone who takes notes or by tape recorder. There will be NO names or other identifying information recorded.

What is the time commitment for the focus group?

The focus group will last 60-90 minutes, depending on the size of the group (smaller = less time) and how much people would like to share.

How will the LAFD use the information you gather?

The information from the Department’s partners and customers will be combined with that from our employees, and the results will be used to inform the Department’s strategic planning process.

What’s next?

Those who participate in the focus groups also will receive an invitation to the Department’s Envision Our LAFD Summit on April 11, 2012. During this all-day Summit, participants will engage actively in small group discussions and conversations based on the findings from all the interviews and focus groups. Those results will become the foundation on which our strategy will be developed. The strategy will be completed by the end of May 2012.

How can I follow the progress of Envision Our LAFD?

We encourage you to bookmark the Los Angeles Fire Department website at LAFD.ORG and follow us on social media:

@EnvisionLAFD

@LAFDFireChief

@LAFD

@LAFDtalk

www.facebook.com/LosAngelesFireDepartment

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Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

107 Years Ago: The Last Alarm for LAFD Captain J. Clinton Johnson

Sunday, February 12, 2012 |

Chief Engineer Moore of the Los Angeles Fire Department was in his headquarters office at the Hill Street station when he heard the six strokes of the alarm gong, followed by a pause, then four more clangs.

Knowing the district and fearing the worst, Moore ran for his buggy and left with the first alarm companies. Turning right from Hill onto First Street, Moore saw a solid column of smoke and flames. What he had been expecting for years was now happening.

The massive wind-driven fire at the Los Angeles Farming and Milling Company would lead the deaths of four civilians, and prove injurious to a well-respected Captain who would succumb to his injuries six years later...

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FIRE DEPARTMENT LOSES AN EFFICIENT MEMBER
Los Angeles Times, February 13, 1905

Captain J. Clinton Johnson
Capt. J. Clinton Johnson of the No. 8 Engine Company Succumbs to Disease Caused by Exposure Incident to His Duties as a Fire Fighter.

Capt. J. Clinton Johnson of the No.8 engine company, one of the best men in the Los Angeles Fire Department, died at 8:30 o'clock last night at his home, No. 2630 Peabody Avenue, after an illness of many months, directly due to exposure to which he was subjected in his line of duty.

Had he lived until next May he would have been eighteen years a member of the department, and during that period he has seen it grow from a small beginning to one of the best equipped and most efficient in the West, and he has helped to conquer some of the most serious fires which ever broke out in the city.

The illness of Capt. Johnson dated from the tragic fire on Commercial and Alameda streets six years ago, when the plant of the Los Angeles Farming and Milling Company was destroyed and four men lost their lives. He was on duty for forty hours without rest and... (read more...)
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To learn more about our Brother Clinton and other members of our Department who have paid the ultimate price in their service to the City, visit the LAFD Museum and Fallen Firefighter Memorial in Hollywood or click:


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

41 Years Ago Today: The Sylmar/San Fernando Earthquake Strikes Los Angeles

Thursday, February 09, 2012 |

An hour before sunrise, at 6:01 AM on February 9, 1971, the greater Los Angeles area was struck by one of the most devastating earthquakes in California history.

On this 41st anniversary of the Sylmar/San Fernando Earthquake (the public and scientists have used both names to describe the event) the Los Angeles Fire Department asks you to remember the magnitude 6.6 temblor that took 65 lives and caused more than a half-billion dollars in damage.



Memory of the 1971 quake faded for many, when 23 years later, the Northridge Earthquake awakened millions in our region through destructive pre-dawn shaking.

Are you and your loved ones any more prepared today than those 'old-time' folks we see in the video? Chances are the answer is no.

That's why Neighborhood Firefighters encourage you to "Be Ready!" by taking simple action today to prepare for the inevitable - because nobody believes it will be another forty-one years before another significant earthquake!


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

103 Years Ago: The Last Alarm for LAFD Engineer Harry Buckingham

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On the windy and rainy night of January 31, 1909, the horse-drawn hose wagon of Los Angeles Fire Department Engine Company 20 bogged down in mud while on a run to a small fire. Engineer Harry E. Buckingham, age 31, worked with colleagues to the point of exhaustion during the next hour until they freed the apparatus.

Harry Buckingham
Shortly thereafter, Engineer Buckingham collapsed. His death nine days later on February 9, 1909 was considered work related and attributed to... (read more...)
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To learn more about our Brother Harry and other members of our Department who have paid the ultimate price in their service to the City, visit the LAFD Museum and Fallen Firefighter Memorial in Hollywood or click:


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Attends Extreme Aircrew Training at 'Graveyard of the Pacific'

Wednesday, February 08, 2012 |

During January 2012, the Los Angeles Fire Department was invited to participate in a first of its kind joint-agency training at the U.S. Coast Guard's Advanced Helicopter Rescue School. It was an extreme honor for LAFD personnel to learn from the world's finest...


Extreme Aircrew Training at 'Graveyard of the Pacific'
Written by:
Petty Officer 3rd Class Nathan Littlejohn
13th Coast Guard District public affairs.

Hail pelts the side of students’ faces as they prepare to plunge into the frigid surf. Their teachers put on fins while lifeguards float on jet skis just beyond the 12-foot breaking waves, crashing on the beach before them. This is no ordinary classroom, and these are no ordinary students.

The Coast Guard’s Advanced Helicopter Rescue School, held in Astoria, Ore., and the area surrounding the Columbia River entrance, typically does what its name implies. It’s a Coast Guard school that teaches Coast Guard helicopter crews advanced rescue techniques required for successful mission execution in extreme conditions.

One recent class of trainees took their extreme training as an opportunity to partner with other rescue professionals. The class convening at the end of January included air operations members of both the Los Angeles City and Santa Barbara County, Calif., fire departments as well as pararescuemen with the Royal Canadian Air Force 442nd Squadron out of Comox, B.C. The mix of students marked the first joint-agency class of its kind, strengthening partnerships and sharing knowledge with civilian and military rescue agencies with similar search and rescue missions. (read on, see additional video...)
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We wish to thank Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr. and members of the 13th Coast Guard District for allowing members of your Los Angeles Fire Department to participate in this valuable training.


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

44 Years Ago Today: The Last Alarm for LAFD Captain Clifford Collord

Tuesday, February 07, 2012 |

The lights had been out - but not for long, at Los Angeles Fire Department Station 32, when the crew was alerted at 10:23 PM on February 7, 1968 to a possible structure fire at 3075 Wilshire Boulevard.

Clifford Collord with daughter Nancy
Leading the way in what would prove to be his last departure from their 1915-era quarters, 47 year-old Captain Clifford Collord and Engine Company 32 joined Engines 11 and 13, Trucks 11 and 29, Salvage 32 and Battalion 11 Chief Vernon Braden in a swift response to the Wilshire Center address.

Though no external evidence of fire was noted at the nine-story United States Borax & Chemical Corporation, a security guard told first-arriving firefighters of a small rubbish fire on the third floor.

The fire department personnel rode the elevators to investigate.

On the third floor white smoke was observed oozing from a small hole in the floor of a room near the elevator. Chief Braden reported back to LAFD Dispatchers at the Westlake Signal Office that Engine and Truck 11 would handle a small fire.

Chief Braden, his firefighter Aide (driver) Robert Skemp and Fireman Gerald Babcock of Engine 11, along with a security guard, entered an elevator and rode to the second floor. At the same time, Captain Clifford Collord, along with his firemen, Richard Matthews and James Oliver, entered an adjacent elevator and a maintenance worker took them to the same floor.

When the first elevator with Chief Braden stopped at the second floor, the inner door opened, but the outer door remained closed. Fire and smoke began to fill the elevator. Unknown to the men inside, a fire was burning in a lunch room and spreading along the second-floor corridor. The men tried pushing the elevator button to take them back to the ground floor to no avail. The elevator was inoperative. The emergency alarm system in the elevator was not functioning, their hand-held radio calls not heard, nor were their screams for help.

Meanwhile, in the other elevator with Captain Collord, his crew and the maintenance worker also stopped at the second floor. The doors opened... (read more...)

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To learn more about our Brother Clifford and other members of our Department who have paid the ultimate price in their service to the City, visit the LAFD Museum and Fallen Firefighter Memorial in Hollywood or click:


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Los Angeles Harbor Salute LAFD

Monday, February 06, 2012 |

LAFD Chief Brian Cummings Honored by Boys and Girls Clubs of L.A. Harbor. LOS ANGELES - The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Los Angeles Harbor paid a special visit to the Los Angeles Civic Center on Tuesday, January 17, 2012 to thank the Los Angeles Fire Department for supporting their organization throughout the 2011 holiday season.

Extending appreciation to members of the LAFD for their support, the Club's Interim Executive Director Tony Tripp and Special Events Marketing Director Deanna Deering were joined by Director of Development Derald Sidler in thanking firefighters on behalf of the Club's Board of Directors and the 8,000 youth the club serves annually.

A highlight of the accolade-filled meeting was the formal presentation to Los Angeles Fire Chief Brian Cummings of a hand made card created and signed by the children of the Boys & Girls Club.

Chief Cummings as well as LAFD Chief of Staff, Assistant Fire Chief John Vidovich, were lauded for volunteering to serve 400 Thanksgiving meals at the Dana Strand Boys & Girls Club in November, with Chief Vidovich personally securing funds to purchase the 30 turkeys that were served that night.

Additionally, Los Angeles Firefighter Michael Marquez was feted for his instrumental role in obtaining toys as holiday gifts for 1500+ club members. According to Mr. Tripp "This year was especially thin when it came to toy donations", adding "If it wasn't for the Los Angeles Fire Department coming through for us year-after-year we would not have enough toys to distribute to the youth of our community."

To a room of applause, Mr. Tripp summed it up by saying "The Los Angeles Fire Department is a great friend to our organization and we are very grateful to have their support."


Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Early Morning Accident Critically Injures Six in South Los Angeles

Friday, February 03, 2012 |

South Los Angeles - An early morning traffic collision critically injured six patients and brought nearly 50 Firefighters to the scene.

At 2:47 am on Friday, February 3, 2012, Firefighters responded to the intersection of West Florence Avenue and South Halldale Avenue for a reported "traffic collision." First arriving resources noted several victims lying in the middle of the street but could identify only a single vehicle. Immediately, additional resources were requested to the scene of this "multi-casualty-incident" (MCI).


 

http://www.ktla.com/videogallery/67834796/News/VIDEO:-6-Women-Critical-After-SUV-Slams-Into-Hyde-Park-Trees---Wendy-Burch-reports

The involved vehicle, carrying a total of six passengers, appeared to have struck a tree. A report from one Rescue Ambulance confirmed that five of the patients had been ejected from the sport-utility-vehicle (SUV) and one additional patient did require extrication. 46 Firefighters, including 9 Rescue Ambulances, worked quickly and diligently to provide the best and most appropriate patient-care at the scene of this horrible accident.

All six patients were young-adult females and unfortunately, each sustained what appeared to be life-threatening injuries. They were each rapidly transported to local hospitals in "critical condition." It was not clear at the time of this report if any of the passengers were wearing seat belts and the exact cause of the accident is under active investigation by the LAPD.

Dispatched Units:
E57 RA257 RA57 E266 E66 T66 E33 HR56 EM11 BC13 E46
RA857 RA66 EM2 RA33 RA46 EM9 RA64 RA264 RA866 E57



Submitted by Matt Spence, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Los Angeles Fire Department Settles EEOC Harassment & Retaliation Case

Wednesday, February 01, 2012 |

A situation of significant concern took place within the Los Angeles Fire Department that violated the Department's zero tolerance for harassment.

The City of Los Angeles and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently reached a settlement agreement regarding a claim of harassment and retaliation brought forth by an active member of the Los Angeles Fire Department. Our agency is committed to providing and maintaining a work place free of harassment for all of our employees and is equally committed to ensuring that every employment policy and practice is administered in a manner which does not violate employees' or the public's rights under the law.

The events underlying the member’s complaints of harassment and retaliation occurred in 2006. Since that time, the Department established the Professional Standards Division with a full-time staffed Equal Employment Opportunity investigative unit. Additionally, in order to effectively capture, report and manage these types of complaints, the Los Angeles Fire Department created a complaint filing system which employees now use to independently file complaints.

In an effort to ensure that all employees recognize their responsibility for maintaining a work environment free from any form of discrimination, harassment, retaliation and hazing, the Los Angeles Fire Department is in the process of creating and instituting an enhanced training program specifically related to these topics that builds upon its already established zero tolerance policies.

The Los Angeles Fire Department prides itself in serving our community with Courage, Integrity and Pride. We have earned our reputation by the manner in which we serve the community, and we pledge to earn respect by the way we treat each other.

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Submitted on behalf of LAFD Administration
by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department