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Ten Units Damaged and Dozens Saved in Panorama City

Saturday, March 6, 2021
Firefighter pulling handline in front of burning building
Fire spread to two buildings in Panorama City
Photo Credits: Photo by Greg Doyle
PANORAMA CITY-

Heavy fire billowed out of a townhouse and extended into the apartments behind it, damaging multiple units before firefighters got the upper hand and saved the rest of the building.

At 2:52PM on March 5, 2021 the Los Angeles City Fire Department responded to a reported structure fire in the 8800 block of N Cedros Ave in Panorama City.  The first arriving fire company found fire showing from the 1st floor of a two-story townhouse (8839 Cedros) extending up to the 2nd floor.  As fire attack made their way into the structure, they quickly saw the fire was already into the exposed building (8849 Cedros) at the rear of the fire unit.

Due to active fire in both buildings, the incident commander immediately requested additional resources and this incident rose to the Greater Alarm level (between 7 – 15 fire companies on scene).

Fire attack made quick progress against the flames in the townhouse in 8839 Cedros, limiting the fire to one unit which was fully involved and minor extension into the adjacent townhouse.

Meanwhile, in the two –story O-shaped apartment building to the rear (8849 Cedros) firefighters were both inside fighting fire in two units and on the roof working to stop an entrenched attic fire from spreading through the building.

Under the command of Assistant Chief Corey Rose, the dedicated efforts of the 96 firefighters on scene fully extinguished the fire in both buildings at the one hour and 11 minute mark. They limited damage, especially in 8849 Cedros, defending the rest of the complex through ventilation and aggressive firefighting tactics.

 

Fortunately, functioning smoke alarms alerted some occupants and all (from both buildings) were able to safely exit with no injuries sustained.

The Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety deemed seven units unsafe for occupancy (red-tagged) while three were yellow-tagged (limited occupancy).

All occupants of the two buildings were evacuated and the Recovery Group officer ensured everyone was able to safely gain access into their units (if able) to get needed belongings for the night. The Los Angeles Region American Red Cross responded to continue providing for any immediate assistance needed. S.A.V.E. (Supplying Aid to Victims of Emergency) cards ($250), provided by the California Fire Foundation, were given to those affected residents to help with basic necessities.

The LAFD Arson and Counter-Terrorism Section responded for the investigation per protocol for a Greater Alarm incident. The cause of the fire is officially deemed “Undetermined, with more than one accidental cause”. The fire was not incendiary (purposely started).

The building owner, in a kind showing of gratitude, posted a banner on the building, thanking firefighters. The photo was emailed with these words: "Thank you to the men and women that fought this blaze who minimized the overall damage!  But more importantly THANKS TO EVERYONE AT LAFD THAT GOT ALL THE RESIDENTS OUT SAFELY!!!" 

Banner on apartment building that reads "Thank You LAFD Everyone is SAFE."

Photo by Bill Handy

On Friday March 12, 2021, members from Engine 7, Battalion 12, and Command 42, were invited to Weiss Family Properties to be thanked for a fire they fought one week prior, on March 5, 2021. The commanders from Command 42 and Battalion 12 wanted to make sure the members from Engine 7 received all the credit for their heroic work one week earlier. Assistant Chief Corey Rose and Battalion Chief Albert Ward explained the challenges of such a complex, wind-driven fire. In their kindness and generosity, Rochelle and Bill Handy wanted to show their appreciation by donating to the LAFD foundation to show their gratitude for a job well done.

On Friday March 12, 2021, members from Engine 7, Battalion 12, and Command 42, were invited to Wise Family Properties to be thanked for a fire they fought one week prior, on March 5, 2021. The commanders from Command 42 and Battalion 12 wanted to make sure the members from Engine 7 received all the credit for their heroic work one week earlier. Assistant Chief Corey Rose and Battalion Chief Albert Ward explained the challenges of such a complex, wind-driven fire. In their kindness and generosity, Rochelle and Bill Handy wanted to show their appreciation by donating to the LAFD foundation to show their gratitude for a job well done.

 

PHOTO ALBUM

 

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