Television Station Salutes LAFD Cadet Carlos Herrera

Friday, February 15, 2013 |

LOS ANGELES - This week's KABC-TV Cool Kid is "fired up" about his future, and he's looking to help his community any way he can. Carlos Herrera wants to be a firefighter, and he's off to a great start. He volunteers at Los Angeles Fire Department Station 94 as part of the LAFD Cadet Program.

KABC-TV Reporter Danny Romero tell's us more...

The Los Angeles Fire Department is proud of Carlos and all those age 14-20 who participate in the LAFD Cadet program. To learn more, visit:

To meet more KABC-TV Cool Kids, click here.

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Pair Rescued, Dozens Displaced by Valley Village Apartment Fire

Wednesday, February 13, 2013 |

VALLEY VILLAGE - It took more than 170 Los Angeles Firefighters nearly 90 minutes to tame a Wednesday morning blaze in the San Fernando Valley that directly damaged four apartment units, caused collateral damage to five others and displaced dozens of residents, sending one to the hospital.

Pair Saved, Woman Hospitalized in Valley Village Apartment Blaze. © Photo by Ryan Babroff. Click to view more...The Los Angeles Fire Department was summoned at 10:03 AM on February 13, 2013, to 5260 Bellingham Avenue in Valley Village, where they discovered smoke from the third floor of a four story apartment building, comprised of three occupied floors over ground level parking.

A maintenance worker in a third floor apartment reported hearing a smoke alarm in an adjacent room, where he found active fire. Given advanced warning by the properly functioning device, he was able to safely exit and alert others. The fire gained a strong foothold prior to the Fire Department's arrival, spreading to the apartment above and threatening all eight adjoining units on the south side of the of the 41,493 square-foot non-fire sprinklered building.

Firefighters used ground ladders to safely rescue two imperiled residents from a smoke-charged third level balcony, as their colleagues extended multiple hoselines through serpentine interior hallways filled with heat and smoke to battle deeply entrenched flame. The well coordinated effort of 171 firefighters under the command of Deputy Fire Chief Mario Rueda, fully extinguished the blaze in just 83 minutes.

Pair Saved, Woman Hospitalized in Valley Village Apartment Blaze. © Photo by Mike Meadows. Click to view more...With significant structural compromise to a portion of the wood-frame and stucco structure, including collapse of one apartment balcony, the Department of Building and Safety declared the entire building temporarily untenable. To assist as many as 75 displaced residents, the American Red Cross opened a temporary shelter at the North Hollywood Senior Center.

During the course of the fire, seven residents were examined for smoke exposure, though only one woman desired transport to an area hospital for further evaluation. No other injuries were reported.

Preliminary loss from the fire is estimated at $250,000 ($175,000 structure & $75,000 contents). The cause of the mid-morning fire remains under active investigation.

Dispatched Units: E102 RA102 E86 E39 RA97 E278 T78 T88 EM14 BC10 BC12 E76 T89 E289 T60 E260 RA89 E97 E108 DC3 RA88 E27 E99 E298 T98 E227 T27 EM88 EM11 BC5 BC18 UR88 E3 UR3 T85 E285 BC1 E60 E203 T3 RA803 EA1 RA86 RA39 E210 T10 E61 E26 E293 T93 T11 E211 E37 E88 E235 T35 BC11 AR2 RT83 RA903 T64 E264 BC5 E15 T26 E226 E33 T73 E273 E95 E98 BC10 E105
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Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Smoke Alarms Absent in Boyle Heights Fire that Displaces 17


BOYLE HEIGHTS - Seventeen residents of an eastside duplex were displaced by a raging fire Wednesday morning, that sent one man to the hospital.

The Los Angeles Fire Department was summoned at 6:15 AM on February 13, 2013, to 1901 East Pennsylvania Avenue in Boyle Heights. Firefighters arrived quickly to find heavy fire within the kitchen and hallway of a first floor unit in a two-story residential duplex.

Thirty-nine firefighters under the command of Battalion Chief Phillip Fligiel skillfully confined the fire near the area of origin, extinguishing the flames in just 17 minutes. One male resident who suffered smoke exposure was taken to an area hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

Firefighters expressed clear amazement that there were no additional injuries or loss of life, as the building was not equipped with smoke alarms as required by law.

Monetary loss from the fire - which rendered the building temporarily untenable, was limited to $30,000 ($25,000 structure & $5,000 contents). Nine residents of the downstairs apartment, and eight living upstairs were offered interim housing assistance by the American Red Cross.

The cause of the predawn fire is considered accidental, and attributed to the improper storage of combustible items near a water heater.
Dispatched Units: E2 T2 E202 RA2 E4 RA804 EM1 BC1 E9 RA4 E25 T10 E210
Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD 'Live Fire' Training at Los Angeles International Airport

Monday, February 11, 2013 |

Pending favorable weather, the Los Angeles Fire Department will conduct a 'live fire' training exercise at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). This special drill for firefighters is scheduled to occur between 4:00 AM and 6:00 AM PST on Tuesday, February 12, 2013.

There are no provisions for media or public access.

Historically, smoke from this Federally mandated training has been visible more than 30 miles from the airport. We wish to emphasize there is no cause for public alarm.

Federal Aviation Regulation Part 139 requires all Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) personnel to attend a live fire training drill at least once per year.

LAFD Airport Rescue Fire Fighters serving LAX and Van Nuys Airport use Los Angeles International Airport's $3.75 million state-of-the-art training facility to hone their lifesaving skills. This training site, located at the southwest corner of the 5.6 square mile airport grounds, was built using airport funds. It is designed to support the rigorous demands of the Los Angeles Fire Department while meeting strict aviation and environmental regulations.

Before commencing these live fire drills, LAFD members carefully monitor climate conditions. Drills are conducted in strict adherence to standards designed to maximize safety and minimize environmental concerns. These factors are confirmed with the LAX Control Tower before the final "go-ahead" is given.

These periodic live fire drills at LAX generally take place between 4:00 AM and 6:00 AM, but may be postponed at the last minute due to abrupt changes in climate or as a result of Fire Department or aviation concerns.

We are pleased to note that all water, fuel and firefighting foam used at this LAX training facility is captured. After going through a complex series of scrubbers, water is tested to assure it meets strict clean water standards before being discharged to the nearby Hyperion Treatment Plant.

Passengers and air crews should use LAX and Van Nuys Airports with confidence, knowing that highly trained members of the LAFD are always ready to protect them.

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Submitted by Erik ScottBrian Humphrey, Spokesmen
Los Angeles Fire Department

The LAFD Wants You to Know About 2-1-1


2-1-1 LA County. Click to learn more...On February 11th (2-11), we focus on sharing word of 2-1-1, the easy to use three-digit dialing code for health and human service assistance in Los Angeles and many parts of North America.

2-1-1 in Los Angeles is your around-the-clock contact for information and referral to health and human services. 211 LA County, formerly known as INFO LINE of Los Angeles, has been providing these services since 1981.

Those calling 2-1-1 by telephone or TDD at any hour are connected to a caring professional who can offer guidance and access to a comprehensive range of services. This includes advocacy and support for the abused, at-risk, hungry, ill, unemployed, disabled or homeless; physical and emotional crisis support with referral to shelter and health care; and of course, a wide variety of private and public social services.

When you're not sure where to turn for advice or referral for human needs, help in Los Angeles is as simple as 2-1-1 or (800) 339-6993.

When you encounter someone in need, encourage them to call 2-1-1. For more information, visit:

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

Los Angeles Pair Sentenced in Arson Fire that Severely Injured LAFD Captain

Wednesday, February 06, 2013 |

LOS ANGELES - On January 9, 2011, members of the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) responded to a vehicle fire near Elysian Park. While extinguishing the fire, a violent explosion occurred seriously injuring an LAFD Captain. The Officer was rendered unconscious and sustained a severe skull fracture and several other lesser injuries.

It was later discovered by Investigators from the LAFD Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section (ACTS) that the fire was intentionally set in what appeared to be a case of arson for profit and insurance fraud. The LAFD requested assistance from the California Department of Insurance (DOI).

On Wednesday October 26, 2011, following an 11-month investigation, LAFD ACTS Investigators and DOI Detectives identified and arrested two suspects in conjunction with this auto insurance fraud scheme: Maria Porras (35) and Rigoberto Diaz (37), both of Los Angeles.

Booking Photo of Arson Suspect Rigoberto Diaz
Rigoberto Diaz (Then Age 37)
On February 5, 2013, Rigoberto Diaz pled guilty to 1 count of Arson with Great Bodily Injury and was sentenced to 14 years in the California State Prison system.

Booking Photo of Arson Suspect Maria Porras
Maria Porras (Then Age 35)

On February 4, 2013, Maria Porras pled guilty to 1 count of Insurance Fraud and was sentenced to 3 years formal probation.
Arson is not a victimless crime. If you have information about arson in Los Angeles, please contact the LAFD Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section directly at (213) 893-9800.
Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

LAFD Haz Mat Investigates Port of Los Angeles Fumigation Operation

Tuesday, February 05, 2013 |

TERMINAL ISLAND - On Tuesday, February 05, 2013 at 11:43 AM, firefighters responded to 155 Cannery Street to investigate a fire in an outside storage area where imported goods are fumigated.

Upon arrival firefighters found a small amount of white smoke coming from a 55 gallon drum being used to neutralize pesticide products. A Los Angeles Port Police Officer, exposed to the smoke was transported in good condition to an area hospital for further evaluation.

LAFD Hazmat experts assembled an entry team to perform a rapid assessment during which, a small amount of fire was controlled using a dry chemical fire extinguisher. The product was contained within the drum and LAFD Haz Mat identified it as Aluminum Phosphide.

38 firefighters, under the command of Battalion Chief Graham Everett worked seamlessly with L.A. County Fire Department Health Hazardous Materials Division, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and Los Angeles Port Police.

Pursuant of protocol, the Health Hazardous Materials Division of the Los Angeles County Fire Department will handle the investigation to conclusion.

We are glad to report this incident had no impact on operations in the Port of Los Angeles and shipping continued as normal.

Dispatched Units: E40 E248 T48 E38 E48 SQ48 RA848 RA101 EM13 BC11 E36 BC6 JT4 RA64
Submitted by Katherine Main, Spokesperson
Los Angeles Fire Department

Man Found Dead as Firefighters Extinguish Boyle Heights Blaze

Monday, February 04, 2013 |

BOYLE HEIGHTS - Los Angeles Firefighters battling flames at a business site early Monday morning, discovered the body of a man as they extinguished the blaze, which has been described as suspicious.

The Los Angeles Fire Department was summoned at 12:09 AM on February 4, 2013 and arrived quickly at 3521 East Whittier Boulevard in Boyle Heights to find fire showing from a combination one- and two-story office type building.

Man Found Dead in Boyle Heights Blaze. © Photo by Shawn Kaye. Click to view more...

Eighty firefighters under the command of Battalion Chief Greg Gibson forced entry into the building to mount a fierce assault on intense flames, aided greatly by strategic vertical ventilation performed by rooftop colleagues. While advancing hoselines through the burning building, firefighters discovered a lifeless 54-year old man. Proving to be beyond medical assistance, he was declared dead at the scene.

The firefight continued unabated as LAFD crews tackled stubborn flames, which were brought fully under control in just 41 minutes. No other injuries were reported.

A positive identification of the deceased man, as well as the cause, time and manner of his death, will be determined by the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner.

Monetary loss from the fire has been estimated at $60,000 ($45,000 structure & $15,000 contents). The cause and circumstances surrounding the blaze remain the focus of a joint investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department and Investigators from the Los Angeles Fire Department Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section.
Dispatched Units: E25 RA25 E202 E2 T2 RA2 E17 T9 EM1 BC1 BC11 E9 DC1 T10 E210 E11 AR1 EA1 AR11 E21 T26 E226 E25 T2 E202 E25
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Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

L.A. Firefighters Battle Fire In Downtown Party Supply Store

Sunday, February 03, 2013 |

LOS ANGELES – More than ninety Los Angeles Firefighters battled a Greater Alarm Structure Fire in an open air market, in the Produce District of downtown Los Angeles.

On Sunday, February 03, 2013 at 7:09 PM, firefighters were called to 853 South Central Avenue. The LAFD arrived quickly to find a 20’ x 30’ unit in a two story concrete, commercial building with fire through the roof.

Swift Moving Fire Consumes Los Angeles Party Supply Store. © Photo by Rick McClure, click to view more...Fire companies made a quick and aggressive interior attack with large diameter hose lines, while colleagues preformed vertical ventilation. The rapid and vigorous fire attack limited the blaze to the involved party supply store and prevented the spread of fire to adjacent buildings. A total of 93 firefighters, under the command of Battalion Chief Greg Gibson, fully extinguished the flames in just 18 minutes. Firefighters remained on scene for over 3 hours to perform a thorough overhaul and salvage contents of the building. There were no injuries.
Loss from the fire was limited to $50,000 ($35,000 structure & $15,000 contents). Though the blaze was determined to have started outside and spread into the building, the cause of the fire remains under investigation by the LAFD Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section.

Dispatched Units: E9 T9 RA9 E17 RA17 E210 E10 T10 SQ21 EM1 BC1 BC11 E15 E14 E4 E203 T3 DC1 E211 T11 EM11 BC13 T27 E227 E27 UR27 RA27 UR88 BC5 RA209 AR1
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Submitted by Katherine Main, Spokesperson
Los Angeles Fire Department