Wednesday, July 5, 2017
LAFD Spokesperson: Margaret Stewart
Firefighters face down heavy fire in four condo units
High winds hindered but did not stop firefighters from battling an intense structure fire in Chatsworth that ultimately damaged four condominiums and injured three.
At 4:54PM, the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a reported structure fire at 22166 W James Alan Circle in Chatsworth. Upon arrival, firefighters faced a 47 year-old, wood frame and stucco, two story condominium building (each unit averaging 1,300 square feet) fully involved with fire.
A common attic allowed the fire to blast through the structure while truck companies expertly executed a ‘strip ventilation’ operation. This tactic involves using chainsaws / axes to cut out a long section of the roof that splits the building, allowing the fire to vent through the hole and helping prevent it from burning further through the attic. Their quick actions combined with the aggressive interior fire attack coordinated across multiple units and companies stopped this fire from raging through the complex.
A partial collapse of the roof created an increased safety risk and Assistant Chief Patrick Butler directed the 122 firefighters into a defensive operation, ultimately achieving knockdown of the fire in 81 minutes.
Two firefighters were transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. One civilian was evaluated on scene for possible smoke inhalation and declined transport. The American Red Cross assisted four displaced families with their immediate needs.
The cause of the fire is accidental and attributed to a propane barbecue.
Dispatched units: E296 T96 RA96 E107 RA107 E105 E72 E273 T73 BC10 BC12 RA72 E8 RA104 E239 T39 CM42 EM9 EM11 BC5 E293 T93 E104 E305 T105 E103 EM14 E88 UR88 T27 E227 UR27 HR3 BC5 AR2 BC9 H6 E90 BC15 E89 E287 T87 EA1 RA106 EM1 RM2 CM51 PI1 RA909 HU114 T98 E298 E37 E39 T93 E61 T94 E294 T89 E289 T96 E296
2nd picture credit:Creative Commons Licensed For Your Use: LAFD Photo | Erik Scott
3rd picture credit: Creative Commons Licensed For Your Use: LAFD Photo | Scott Kingsland
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