Autopsy: LACoFD FF exhausted air supply, suffered cardiac arrest

Lawyers for the family of Jonathan Flagler blame on-scene commanders


By Leila Merrill

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles County Fire Department firefighter who died after a structure fire in January in Palos Verdes ran out of oxygen, experienced a heart attack and had methamphetamine in his system, an autopsy shows. Lawyers for his family blame on-scene commanders.

Jonathan Flagler, 47, was discovered in the home still wearing his SCBA, NBC Los Angeles reported. He was transported to a hospital, where he died.

The report said that his death was accidental, resulting from "cardiopulmonary arrest, due to or as a consequence of suffocation."

"This is a result of exhausting his compressed air supply while fighting a residential fire," wrote deputy medical examiner Juan M. Carillo, M.D.

Flagler also tested positive for COVID-19.

Flagler was survived by his wife and their children. The family has said they plan to sue.

Lawyers representing the family issued a statement, Fox 11 reported, and said Flagler's death "was caused when on-scene commanders failed to keep track of the firefighters inside the burning residence, maintain radio contact with those firefighters, and promptly rescue Jonathan."

A recording of radio traffic from the incident is here.


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Memorial honors LACoFD firefighter who died in house fire

The department remembered Jonathan Flagler as a “devoted husband, father, uncle, friend, and hero" and a "highly respected and esteemed firefighter"

 

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