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Civilian Fatality Structure Fire

On Sunday, October 14, at 6:31 AM, 6 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 4 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 3 Arson Units, 2 EMS Battalion Captains, 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team and 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 47 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Battalion Chief Alberto Abarca responded to a Civilian Fatality Structure Fire at 3133 Division Street near Glassell Park.

Firefighters arrived quickly to find smoke showing from the front of a well-secured one-story single family home. Firefighters made forcible entry with hand and power tools to do battle with intense fire within the home.

While attacking the flames, Firefighters discovered and rescued a pair of burned, unconscious and non-breathing female adults from separate rooms at the rear of the home.

Despite the advanced life support efforts of Firefighters, one of the women, who exhibited no vital signs of life, was declared deceased shortly after arrival at the Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center.

Firefighters were able however, to restore and assist breathing for the other woman, who they transported in critical condition to the Glendale Adventist Medical Center. The 59 year-old woman, who sustained full-thickness (3rd degree) burns to her face, neck, hands and back, and thermal injury to her mouth and nose, was later transferred to the Grossman Burn Center at Sherman Oaks Hospital.

The fire was skilfully confined to the front portion of the home and extinguished in less than 18 minutes. No other injuries were reported.

Firefighters found no evidence of functional Smoke Alarms within the home, as required by law. The two bedroom residence was fitted with code-compliant security doors and window bars, and there is no immediate indication that they or any other factor became an impairment to egress. The building was not equipped with fire sprinklers.

A positive identification of the deceased woman, as well as the exact cause, time and manner of her death will be determined by Coroner's officials.

Monetary loss from the fire is estimated at $85,000 ($60,000 structure & $25,000 contents). The cause of this early morning blaze is categorized as 'accidental' and remains under active investigation.

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