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November 5, 2021
Here’s the latest news impacting Los Angeles Firefighters…

Feature
As city deadline looms, LA firefighter union says no one should be fired for not getting vaccinated
Hundreds of first responders in Los Angeles are sounding off on a looming policy that city employees, including firefighters, must be fully vaccinated or risk losing their job. United Firefighters of Los Angeles President Freddy Escobar is urging the city to rethink the Dec. 18 deadline. "To simply have termination on the table is wrong, period," he said. "No one should lose their job over a vaccine mandate, least of all the very people who helped this city get through some of the darkest times this pandemic. People like me," said firefighter paramedic Jennifer Landis. Dreon Brown echoed that sentiment, saying he doesn't want to see a single firefighter lose their job over their decision to not get vaccinated.

LAFD's staff shortage during fire season causing firefighters to worry
The Los Angeles City Fire Department is facing staffing shortages, which have plagued the department for years, but with the city's vaccination mandate approaching, some LAFD members are concerned. As of Wednesday, department officials said the department closed three engines, and converted four trucks into engines, meaning they closed the truck and used staffing to open the pump. The effect City-wide was closing four truck companies and adding an extra engine for the day. The department also closed six EMT rescue ambulances. The 38 trucks currently in service are operating with one less firefighter to try to minimize the impact, according to officials. Public Information Officer for LAFD, Erik Scott, said the shortages are not "new."

Girl, 12, reunites with doctors, firefighters who saved her life after swing part went through skull
Twelve-year-old Lalia Susini reunited this week with her life-saving heroes at an LAFD fire station in Mt. Olympus. Lalia suffered a traumatic brain injury one year ago. "I don't know how to thank everybody," Lalia said. She was playing with a makeshift swing when it broke and a piece went flying through her skull. "I woke up and my mom was on the phone with 911," she described. Paramedics and firefighters rushed her to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Doctors worked tirelessly to save her life. She was paralyzed on her left side and remained in the hospital for nearly a month.

Man Killed in Harvard Heights House Fire
A 23-year-old Texas man was killed and a firefighter was injured in a fire Thursday morning that damaged a house in the Harvard Heights area west of downtown Los Angeles. "There were a total of six patients," LAFD Capt. Sean Saunders said in a statement. "Four civilians at the home were medically evaluated, however, (they) declined transport to the hospital. The fifth patient was a… male found in an upstairs bedroom, tragically beyond medical help, and was determined dead at the scene." Firefighters responded to the 2800 block of West 14th Street at about 6:30 a.m. and extinguished the flames in the two-story building in about a half hour, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Fire Watch
Body Found in Burning Van in South LA
A burning van in South Los Angeles was reported around 12:15 on 8429 South Flower Street on Sunday afternoon. When authorities – initially firefighter and paramedics – arrived on scene, they found a body inside of the burning vehicle. This prompted a arson investigation and LAPD response, and an investigation was open

2 Hospitalized with Severe Burns After Fiery Crash In Winnetka
Two people were hospitalized Monday with severe burns after a fiery crash into parked cars in the Winnetka area. The crash happened at about 12:20 p.m. in the 20500 block of West Saticoy Street, near Mason Avenue. One vehicle was reported to have crashed into parked cars before bursting into flames. Sky 9 was over the scene immediately after the crash. Video from the scene showed a scorched red, two-door vehicle with major front-end damage. It’s unclear if the vehicle struck the tree in front of it. According to Los Angeles Fire Department’s Margaret Stewart, two people have been taken to the hospital in critical condition with burn injuries.

Firefighters Put Out Fire in Wall of Boyle Heights Apartment
Firefighters rushed Saturday to a two-story, center hallway apartment building in Boyle Heights to put out a smoky fire inside one wall. The firefighters were called at 2:26 p.m. to 323 N. Soto St., according to the Los Angeles Fire Department’s Amy Bastman. It took 32 firefighters 21 minutes to find the source of the smoke inside an apartment and put out the flames, Bastman said.

Firefighters Put Down Blaze in 20 Minutes
Fire crews from the Los Angeles Fire Department quickly extinguished a fire in Watts Wednesday. Firefighters were called at 6:04 a.m. to 2260 E. 97th St. where they found flames coming out of a two-story, vacant government housing structure, said department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart. After making forcible entry, firefighters found small content fires in three different units and put them out at 6:24 a.m., Stewart said.

First Responder News
1 dead, 5 hurt after car crashes into Van Nuys restaurant; suspect in custody
A person is dead and five people are injured after a vehicle crashed into a Van Nuys restaurant Sunday evening, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. The crash occurred at 8:07 p.m. in the 7600 block of North Woodley Avenue, when an SUV struck a patron inside a business, which was being used for a pop-up event with different vendors. That patron was declared dead at the scene, while five other people were evaluated for non-life-threatening injuries.

Woman rescued from rain-swollen L.A. River
A woman in her 40s was rescued from the Los Angeles River in the Boyle Heights area as heavy rain drenched the state Monday, according to fire officials.

Firefighters Save Feline Stowaway
On Thursday, October 21, 2021, firefighters helped a man recover a hidden feline from inside of the engine bay of his vehicle. A man traveling south from Palmdale started hearing an odd noise coming from his engine. This noise, however, was not a mechanical malfunction, but rather sounded like an animal crying for help. He pulled into Fire Station 19 for assistance at approximately 6 AM on Thursday, October 21, 2021, as he was passing through Brentwood. He alerted firefighters of hearing what sounded like a kitten's "meow" coming from under the hood in the engine compartment of his vehicle while driving. The driver worked with firefighters to help reach and rescue the little feline out of the car's engine compartment through the front bumper, which was removed in order to rescue the little stowaway to safety. If you are interested in adopting, please reach out to the West LA Animal Shelter at (888) 452-7381.

Firefighters Prevent Car from Falling in Sink Hole in Boyle Heights Parking Lot
A car nearly tumbled in to a sink hole blamed on a collapsed sewer line Friday morning in a Boyle Heights parking lot before firefighters responded to save the day. The sink hole was reported in the 500 block of South Mission Road. Fire crews using heavy equipment prevented the vehicle from falling in, the LAFD said. “As the hole expanded, a vehicle near the edge was at risk of falling in and colliding with gas lines below,” the LAFD said. Utility crews also were sent to the neighborhood east of downtown Los Angeles.

3.6 magnitude earthquake strikes near Maywood, a mile from Downtown L.A.
A 3.6 magnitude earthquake with an epicenter near Maywood shook southeast Los Angeles County early Sunday. The quake struck at 7:01 a.m., at a point just south of E. Washington Boulevard near the intersection with S. Downey Road, about a mile southeast of Downtown L.A., according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The USGS initially recorded the earthquake as having a magnitude of 3.9, before revising it down. The quake was felt in areas including nearby Boyle Heights, East Los Angeles, Commerce and Long Beach.

State News
Tracking coronavirus vaccinations in California
Experts say about 85% of Americans will need to be vaccinated to bring the COVID-19 pandemic under control. This page tracks California’s progress toward that goal using data from state and federal authorities.

California Fire Map & Tracker
An interactive map of wildfires burning across the Bay Area and California.

Events
Annual Event Raises Funds for UFLAC Fire Foundation
Thank you to all the sponsors and participants of our annual Golf Tournament who helped raise $175,000 to support the mission of the UFLAC Fire Foundation to provide financial support to firefighters and their immediate families who suffer economic hardship as a result of illness, injury or death as well as educational assistance to children of fallen firefighters.
In Remembrance
Remembering Our Fallen Brothers & Sisters
Captain
Gary D. Peck
Deceased: 10/31/2021
Appointed: 3/10/1962
Assignment: FS 102
Retired: 10/3/1991

Captain
George McConnell
Deceased: 10/15/2021
Appointed: 5/19/1958
Assignment: FS 24
Retired: 4/13/1986

Fireman
Pat M. Murphy
Deceased: 10/12/2021
Appointed: 6/16/1953
Assignment: FS 85
Retired: 3/26/1983

Captain
Albert C. Abel
Deceased: 10/11/2021
Appointed: 7/3/1951
Assignment: Tractor Unit
Retired: 1/16/1980

Engineer
David C. Bryan
Deceased: 10/9/2021
Appointed: 10/18/1969
Assignment: FS 74
Retired: 5/25/2000

Engineer
James B. Hall
Deceased: 10/9/2021
Appointed: 4/13/1968
Assignment: FS 59
Retired: 4/18/1993

Fire Inspector I
Shawn L. Dean
Deceased: 10/1/2021
Appointed: 2/8/1987
Assignment: Fire Inspector
Retired: 7/31/2017

Engineer
Ralph Lokers
Deceased: 9/24/2021
Appointed: 6/16/1953
Assignment: FS 38
Retired: 7/19/1985

Captain
Harry E. Finch
Deceased: 9/22/2021
Appointed: 12/17/1951
Assignment: FS 23
Retired: 7/9/1978

Firefighter III
John C. Hendricks
Deceased: 9/22/2021
Appointed: 3/1/1989
Assignment: FS 55
Retired: 7/3/2009

Captain
Ralph E. Davis
Deceased: 9/18/2021
Appointed: 7/10/1947
Assignment: FS 87
Retired: 6/1/1978

Captain II
Stephen J. Engh
Deceased: 9/9/2021
Appointed: 11/7/1977
Assignment: Medical Liaison
Retired: 11/18/1999

UFLAC’s 2020 LAFD
Year In Review 
On behalf of the approximately 3,400 Firefighters of United Firefighters of Los Angeles City, IAFF Local 112 (UFLAC), we are proud to present the 2020 Los Angeles Fire Department Year in Review. UFLAC’s mission is to lead the way to protect and advocate for the health, safety, working conditions, wages and benefits of our members and their families. This book helps to tell the story of our dedicated First Responders who continued to protect lives and property in Los Angeles while risking their own safety during an extraordinary year.
In 2020, our Firefighters and Paramedics responded to more than 444,000 emergency calls for service throughout Los Angeles - an average of 1,213 calls per day. As an all-risk fire and rescue agency serving more than four million people, the LAFD is one of the busiest fire departments in the country and we are ready to answer any call that may come our way. UFLAC is honored to help showcase the dedication and commitment demonstrated by the men and women of the LAFD. Click HERE to view the publication.

About UFLAC: Since 1918, UFLAC has been the labor organization of the proud men and women that serve as firefighters and emergency medical responders protecting the City of Los Angeles. The members of the Los Angeles Fire Department rely on UFLAC to focus on the wellbeing and safety of those that protect the lives of others. For more information, visit www.uflac.org.