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‘Long road to recovery': LAFD firefighter severely injured in explosion is alert, talking

Veteran FF injured in truck blast that hurt eight others was extubated

By Hunter Lee
The Whittier Daily News

LOS ANGELES — A severely injured firefighter, who was among several injured when a compressed natural gas tank on a semi-truck tractor exploded last week in Wilmington, was extubated over the weekend and later was alert and able to talk, authorities said.

Eight other firefighters injured in the blast were released from the hospital Friday.

The lone remaining hospitalized firefighter, a 37-year-old man and nine-year veteran of the Los Angeles Fire Department was “awake, alert and talking” on Saturday, Captain Erik Scott said in a tweet.

“It will be a long road to recovery,” with the next step will be to reintroduce food, Scott said.

Seven other firefighters were released from the hospital on Friday afternoon, and an eighth firefighter — who was seriously injured — was released later that evening, Scott said. All eight remained at home on Monday, “resting with their families.”

Around 7 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 15, a trucker called 911 after the CNG-powered semi-truck had caught fire on the 1100 block of Alameda Street, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

The truck was equipped with two 100-pound tanks, one on either side.

One tank exploded around 6 minutes after firefighters arrived.

About 150 additional firefighters arrived to help the wounded firefighters and put out the fire, and a firefighting robot was brought in to remotely apply water to the second tank as it continued to burn, officials said.

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