LAFD Battles Greater Alarm Hillside Home Fire in Highland Park

Friday, February 07, 2014 |

HISTORIC HIGHLAND PARK - Los Angeles Firefighters battled a blaze in a multi-story hillside home on February 7, 2014. The fire was extinguished before anyone was injured.

Just after 1:00 PM, the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a Structure Fire at 1933 Phillips Way. They made their way up narrow streets to find a two-story hillside home with heavy smoke showing. The flames were rapidly spreading inside and additional resources were quickly requested.

Minutes prior to their arrival, two residents of the house were upstairs and noticed smoke raising through the floor from the lower level of their home. They immediately awoke the third resident who was asleep downstairs and ran outside with their pet cats.

Firefighters made a swift and coordinated interior attack on the fire from the subterranean level, where the bulk of the flames were, and fought their way up. Simultaneously, their colleagues laddered and ventilated the home by strategically cutting holes on the roof with chainsaws, releasing the heat, thick smoke, and gasses. Firefighters had to open up interior walls and use infrared thermal cameras to detect and extinguish flames hiding in the walls of the 92 year-old house. A small amount of nearby vegetation burned, but it was extinguished before it could spread to neighboring lots. Firefighters even tenderly provided oxygen to a pet cat that suffered smoke inhalation.

A total of 97 firefighters, under the command of Battalion Chief Richard Rideout, fully extinguished the blaze in 37 minutes. No one was injured.

After the a knockdown of the flames, specialized firefighters from LAFD's Urban Search and Rescue team ensured the structural integrity of the subterranean floor ceiling to make certain it would not collapse on firefighters while overhauling the home's contents. Firefighters remained on scene for hours to ensure complete extinguishment, and salvage as much of the owner's property as possible.

The cause is electrical, likely a wall socket. The estimated dollar loss is $230,000 ($200,000 structure and $30,000 contents) and estimated dollars saved is $270,000.

Dispatched Units: E55 RA55 E212 E12 T12 RA12 E201 T1 EM2 BC2 E44 E42 E250 RA1 RA47 E235 T35 EM11 BC1 E3 E47 E220 T20 E203 T3 BC5 BC11 E29 DC1 T3 UR3.
Many are unaware of the strategic moving of companies not involved in the incident. Due to a large amount of resources committed to the fire, and several additional apparatus out-of-service for maintenance today, the Floor Captain at Metro Fire Communications dispatch center wisely made the following movement of fire companies to ensure every portion of Los Angeles had the appropriate amount and type of resources available for the additional emergencies continually transpiring: MOV E15 to FS 55, MOV LF26 to FS 12, MOV E10 to FS 1, MOV E64 to FS 50, MOV E33 to FS 42, MOV E66 to FS 33, MOV E27 to FS 3, MOV E2 to FS 47, MOV E63 to FS 61, MOV LF61 to FS 20, MOV E43 to FS 44, MOV E5 to FS 43, MOV E88 to FS 35, MOV E88 to FS 6, MOV RA17 to FS 55.
CLICK HERE to read about a recent hillside home fire that injured two LAFD firefighters.

Submitted by Erik Scott, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department


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