By Erik Scott
Photos by Rick McClure
Los Angeles firefighters relentlessly battled an extremely hot and stubborn major emergency fire Saturday night at a Venice (CA) public storage facility that led to the injury of eight responders. At 7:37 p.m. on October 25, 2014, the Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) responded to a structure fire at Extra Space Storage, located at 658 Venice Blvd. They found a two-story 80,874 square foot storage facility with smoke on the second floor.
Several interior storage units were well involved in fire, and flames spread rapidly as the intense heat and thick smoke banked down to floor level. Firefighters battled until they were low on air, and had to exit to get new air-bottles, then rejoined the fight. Waves of additional firefighters were continuously assigned through the night to battle the intense and challenging fire.
The building’s metal roof made it difficult to vertically ventilate with saws to allow heat and smoke to release. Firefighters broke windows to assist with horizontal ventilation and used rotary saws with diamond tip blades to cut large sections of exterior stucco walls.
Eight Los Angeles firefighters sustained non-life threatening injury while battling the blaze. Five of those injured required brief care at area hospitals, before they were treated and released.
The rotational presence of 365 Los Angeles firefighters, under the command of Assistant Chief Mark Stormes, battled fire through the night and into the next day to prevent two-thirds of the building from sustaining any direct fire damage. Though the bulk of flames were controlled within 6 hours, flammable contents within the highly compartmentalized building took more than 14 hours to fully extinguish.
Loss to the building’s contents, which included many family heirlooms, is inestimable. Fire related damage to the structure, which was not equipped with fire sprinklers, is still being tabulated. The cause of the fire remains under active investigation.
It is expected that patrons of Extra Space Storage will not be able to access their rental storage units until Monday at the earliest.
Dispatched Units: E63 RA63 E67 E62 RA62 E269 T69 E292 T92 EM9 BC4 BC9 E59 T63 E263 E263 T63 RA62 EM9 T69 E269 E67 BC4 E59 RA59 T5 E205 DC1 BC18 E226 T26 E66 EM11 E5 UR5 RA5 T88 E288 UR88 BC5 RA909 RT83 RA43 EM14 EA1 E261 T61 E94 E43 E237 T37 AR2 E88 E95 E58 E19 E295 T95 E294 T94 E215 T15 E211 T11 BC11 BC13 HU59 RA59 BC6 E203 T3 E15 E93 RA66 E260 T60 RA69 E68 E21 T98 E298 BC1 BC14 RA909 DT1 T87 E287 E83 E26 T12 E212 DT2 E43 T66 E266 T1 E201 RA61 RA246 E28 E65 E25 E48 SU2 CP2 E10 T27 E227 UR27 RA867 EM1 T29 E229 T33 E233 E17 E4 T73 E273 T89 E289 E85 E72 FT100 BC12 E100 BC13 AR34 AR15 AR23 E28 HU59 AR10 HL1 HL3 E11 E15 T15 E215 E37 T37 E237 RA5 E60 AR9
NOTE: Some units above may appear more than once, as they were dispatched, worked at the fire, only to be released and later reassigned (sometimes with other staff) during extended operations.
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