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August 27, 2021
Here’s the latest news impacting Los Angeles Firefighters…

Feature
Firefighter III Henry Munoz Celebration of Life
The Los Angeles City Fire Department was deeply saddened by the active duty death of Henry Munoz, Firefighter III. Firefighter Munoz began his career with the LAFD on May 21, 2001. His most recent field assignment was Fire Station 107, serving the Chatsworth community. Firefighter Munoz sadly passed away on July 22, 2021. He is survived by his wife, Kate and his children Jacob, Julie and Jackie.

Man killed, firefighter injured in blaze at commercial building in Florence
A man’s remains were found amid the search for a worker who went missing during a blaze that also left a firefighter injured at a commercial structure in South Los Angeles Monday afternoon, officials said. Firefighters responded around 3:30 p.m. to the building in the Florence neighborhood on the 1000 block of East 60th Street that is believed to contain a metal furnishings manufacturing firm, the L.A. Fire Department said in an alert. The deceased victim was believed to be one of two employees who ran into the burning building before firefighters arrived, LAFD said. One of the men escaped to safety, but the other was not seen exiting and was later unaccounted for. Firefighters searched the charred structure for more than an hour, including in areas that were densely packed with metal storage, before the remains were found, officials said.

Major emergency fire damages Panorama City commercial building
A major emergency fire damaged a commercial building in Panorama City Friday, but no one was hurt. At least 105 firefighters battled the blaze at the one-story structure 14621 W. Titus St. It was reported at 12:09 a.m., and its progress had been stopped by around 2:20 a.m., said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Nicholas Prange. Firefighters continued to search for pockets of fire and hot spots within the debris, Prange said. "While no official 'knockdown' has been declared by the incident commander due to inaccessible pockets of fire within the debris, firefighters are commencing overhaul operations and will eventually leave a fire company on ‘fire watch’ through the morning,'' Prange said in a statement.

LAFD adds large water-dropping chopper to fleet as peak fire season approaches
City officials and the Los Angeles Fire Department are preparing for peak fire season. The firefighting fleet now includes a larger chopper that can drop 2,600 gallons of water per load, with Monday marking the first day of the city's 150-day contract for the Erickson Air-Crane. Most standard choppers can only carry 500 gallons per load. During fire season, the concerns are focused on the combination of dry brush and Santa Ana winds that often become a dangerous combination. With new choppers on hand, LAFD is prepared for fire season - but officials are urging residents to be ready too. Mayor Eric Garcetti said everyone should have a plan, which really comes down to knowing where to evacuate and deciding when to go when the time comes.

Fire Watch
Firefighters Battle Small Brush Fire in Montecito Heights
Firefighters battled a small brush fire that charred about three acres of grass and was burning uphill near 4110 N. Monterey Rd. in Montecito Heights, Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart said. LAFD had 29 fire companies on scene in Debs Park where they worked to get a perimeter around the fire. It remained mainly a terrain driven blaze in medium to heavy brush with no winds. Aerial drops were made while ground crews are made their way up the hillsides with hand lines, and LA County Fire responded with hand crews to assist with the cutting line.

Fire Damages 13-Story Mid-Wilshire Building
A highrise building in the Mid-Wilshire area caught fire Thursday, and the cause of the fire remains under investigation. No one was injured in the blaze, which was extinguished in 20 minutes by the Los Angeles Fire Department. The blaze broke out on the fifth floor of a 13-story highrise in 300 block of South Hauser Boulevard just before 11 a.m. Thursday, the fire department reported. "Firefighters ascended the 13-story apartment building constructed in 1951 to find heavy smoke on the 5th floor. Firefighters instructed residents to shelter in place to avoid hallway smoke from contaminating their units, while continuing to search for the fire. There was fire in one unit on the 5th floor," said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Nicholas Prange. "It took 51 firefighters 20 minutes to extinguish the flames.

Two Pets Killed in Sherman Oaks House Fire
Firefighters rescued two cats and a rabbit from a house fire in Sherman Oaks Saturday, but two other pets at the home died, authorities said. A man at the home suffered a cut to one of his hands when he tried to rescue the pets prior to the arrival of firefighters. The fire was reported at 1:31 p.m. at 14913 W. Addison St., according to the Los Angeles Fire Department’s Brian Humphrey, who said it was electrical in nature.

Photo by Rick McClure
Potential suspect detained after brush fire in Shadow Hills area of LA
Firefighters knocked down a small brush fire Sunday in Shadow Hills that charred about an acre of grass and a possible arson suspect was taken into police custody, authorities said. The blaze, which began burning near 8300 W. La Tuna Canyon Road, near the 210 Freeway, was reported at 4:43 p.m., said Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart. Firefighters remained at the scene to put out any hot spots that might flare up, Stewart said. A potential arson suspect was detained by the Fire Department and taken into custody by the Los Angeles Police Department, Stewart said.

Popular Thai Restaurant Night + Market Catches Fire in Silver Lake, Closing ‘For a While’
A small electrical fire at Night + Market took place a few nights ago, causing minor damage and leading to the popular Silver Lake Thai restaurant’s indefinite but hopefully temporary closure. Co-owner Sarah St. Lifer, who opened the restaurant with husband and chef Kris Yenbamroong, said the LA fire department was able to limit the damage of the fire, though the incident will mean the place will be closed “for a while.” Also, because it happened in the middle of the night, no one was hurt from the blaze.

Photo by Mike Meadows
Trash Truck Catches Fire in North Hollywood
A trash truck caught on fire in a North Hollywood alley Tuesday evening, damaging an adjacent power pole according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. The fire was reported at 2:38 p.m. at 6638 N Elmer Ave. Firefighters contained the fire on arrival and were working to fully extinguish the burning truck, and managed to keep the flames from damaging nearby homes. The truck driver escaped the vehicle safely, and no injuries were reported. Firefighters allowed the liquified natural gas that was leaking from a tank to burn in a safe, controlled manner until the fuel ran out.

Fire Erupts at Metal Scrapyard, Prompting Hazmat Response
Los Angeles firefighters and a hazardous materials team are battling a fire at a metal scrap yard in Boyle Heights. The blaze involves titanium shavings, triggering the need for a hazmat response. Crews are monitoring water runoff from the firefight for hazardous materials. The fire, which has sent smoke billowing into the air over East Los Angeles, broke out shortly before 3:20 p.m. Monday at the scrapyard at 1820 South Soto Street. The outside titanium piles are not causing any structural threats and are being allowed to burn, according to Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart.

First Responder News
Pedestrian killed, 5 injured in Wilmington crash
A woman was killed and five other people were critically injured in a crash in Wilmington Monday morning, officials said. The crash occurred about 10:50 a.m. in the 1000 block of North Wilmington Boulevard, the Los Angeles Fire Department said in an alert. A preliminary investigation revealed the first vehicle hit the second vehicle, causing that vehicle to lose control and strike a woman crossing the street, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

Man Killed, 2 Hurt in Corvette Crash in Los Feliz
A man was killed and a woman was critically hurt when a Chevrolet Corvette crashed in Los Feliz Sunday evening. The crash occurred in the 1800 block of North Vermont Avenue, near Franklin Avenue, at 8:11 p.m., according to Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart. A Corvette carrying three people traveling north on Vermont Avenue collided with several parked cars, according to Los Angeles police. A 20-year-old man who was a passenger in the Corvette died at the scene, the fire department said. He was not immediately identified. An 18-year-old woman also riding in the Corvette was rushed to a hospital in critical condition, the fire department said.

Woman Killed in Wrong-Way Driving Collision with Big Rig On 101 Freeway in Encino; Driver Arrested After Becoming Combative
A woman was killed and five other people injured, including four children, in a wrong-way multi-vehicle crash on the southbound Ventura (101) Freeway in Encino Thursday night. The crash was reported at 7:10 p.m. near the San Diego (405) Freeway, after the driver of a white Lincoln Navigator crashed head-on into a big rig, according to the California Highway Patrol. The driver was going northbound in a southbound lane near Haskell Avenue when it collided with a tractor-trailer. When officers got to the scene, the driver tried to walk away, officers said. Law enforcement approached the suspect, and he became combative. According to the CHP, the driver assaulted the officers, who used a stun gun and hog-tied him, before putting a spit-bag over his face.

Hollywood Hills Hit-And-Run Injures 5 Pedestrians, 2 Teens Critically Injured
On Sunday night, a vehicle slammed into five pedestrians in the Hollywood Hills near the 101 Freeway and left the scene. The collision occurred about 9:05 p.m. outside 7080 W. Mulholland Drive, Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart said. A 19-year-old male man a 16-year-old girl were taken to Cedars Sinai Medical Center in critical condition. Three others had minor injuries. The driver of the car did not stop to help, Officer T. Noland of the Los Angeles Police Department’s West Traffic Bureau said, adding that the investigation will include a search for surveillance video.

Firefighters Rescue Construction Worker Who Fell 14 Feet Down Hole in Mar Vista
A worker has been taken to a hospital after being rescued from a 14-foot-deep hole in Mar Vista. A worker was reported to be trapped in the concrete-lined hole at a construction site in the 3700 block of South Boise Ave. at about 10:20 a.m., according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. A search-and-rescue team was deployed and was able to use a harness to safely bring the worker back up to ground level by 11 a.m. The worker was conscious and alert and determined to have no imminently life-threatening injuries.

LAFD Rescues Pair from High Surf near Point Fermin in San Pedro
Firefighters hiked down a seaside cliff trail to the shoreline, where the male and female, the latter with minor-to-moderate leg injuries, were stranded by tide at the base of a seaside cliff south of 'Sunken City'. An LAFD helicopter has safely hoisted the female into a hovering LAFD rescue helicopter for transport to an area hospital, while the uninjured male was assisted up the trail by LAFD ground crews.

Man Rescued After Spending Days in Bel Air Ravine
A homeless man was rescued from a ravine in Bel Air Wednesday after having spent several days in thick brush without food or water. A resident living near 2415 Nalin Drive, near Roscomare Road, reported to police at about 4:30 p.m. that they heard calls for help coming from the brush about 500 feet from their home, said Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department. Los Angeles Police Department ground and air units searched the area for any sign of a person in distress, but could not find them. LAFD helicopters were called in to assist the search, Humphrey said. A paramedic was lowered into the brush to look for the source of the calls for help and found the man lying in the brush in a ravine after about 40 minutes of searching.

Man Airlifted Out of Runyon Canyon After Falling Ill
A man who fell ill while hiking in Runyon Canyon Park was airlifted out of the region by the Los Angeles Fire Department Wednesday morning. The call was reported around 8:08 a.m. on a remote section of the West Ridge hiking trail. LAFD said an adult man became "suddenly ill" and was possibly dehydrated, prompting a ground and air response from LAFD and park rangers. The man was hoisted onto a rescue helicopter in fair condition and taken to a local hospital.

Lamborghini slams into fence behind Hollywood post office; several injured, DUI suspect arrested
A motorist was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence after an orange Lamborghini crashed in Hollywood early Saturday morning, injuring at least two other people who were inside the luxury sports car, authorities said. Firefighter-paramedics were dispatched shortly before 2:30 a.m. to the parking lot of U.S. Postal Service's Hollywood station in 6500 block of Selma Avenue. No one was transported to a hospital, according to Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Driver mows down fire hydrant, causing flooding in Chatsworth neighborhood
A hit-and-run driver crashed into a fire hydrant, shearing it off and sending a torrent of water into a number of nearby homes in Chatsworth Thursday evening, neighbors said. The flooding occurred in the 10900 block of Andora Avenue around 6:11 p.m., prompting a response from Los Angeles Fire Department firefighters and LADWP crews. LAFD said there were no injuries or evacuations due to the flood. Prior to the flooding, home surveillance video captured an SUV go down the street and as it speeds out of view, water suddenly shoots up into the air after the fire hydrant was sheared, narrowly missing a man walking his dog.

Budget
Presenting 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.
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.

California's Most Destructive Wildfires and How They Started
In just a few days, the monster Camp Fire in Northern California tore through a Butte County community to become the state's most destructive wildfire on record. Its staggering rate of destruction places it atop a list of historic wildfires in California, where four of the state's 20 most-destructive wildfires started in the August 2020. They are the Creek, CZU Lightning Complex, North Complex and LNU Complex fires. Below, a look at the most damaging wildfires on record in the state. The figures, obtained from CAL FIRE, are based on the number of structures — homes, barns, garages, sheds, commercial properties and other buildings — that were destroyed.

Events
In Remembrance
Remembering Our Fallen Brothers & Sisters
Battalion Chief
Joseph J. Coaty
Deceased: 8/19/2021
Appointed: 11/1/1956
Assignment: Battalion 4
Retired: 8/9/1985

Firefighter II
Don A. Meredith
Deceased: 8/15/2021
Appointed: 2/9/1963
Assignment: FS 69
Retired: 8/3/1989

Firefighter III
Edward W. Davidson
Deceased: 8/15/2021
Appointed: 5/13/1973
Assignment: FS 5
Retired: 5/31/2006

Captain I
Paul T. Papp
Deceased: 8/10/2021
Appointed: 8/10/1980
Assignment: Valley Brush Unit
Retired: 4/6/2006

Engineer
Gordon D. Jensen
Deceased: 8/10/2021
Appointed: 11/24/1962
Assignment: FS 13
Retired: 3/10/1999

Fire Inspector I
Jean C. Samson
Deceased: 8/10/2021
Appointed: 4/27/1975
Assignment: Environmental Unit
Retired: 7/23/2009

Firefighter III
Gregory A. Des Baillets
Deceased: 8/7/2021
Appointed: 8/23/1969
Assignment: FS 96
Retired: 3/29/1997

Fireboat Pilot
Arthur L. Donaher
Deceased: 8/6/2021
Appointed: 4/19/1948
Assignment: Fireboat 2
Retired: 6/1/1976

Firefighter II
Ronald L. Zulick
Deceased: 7/27/2021
Appointed: 4/18/1959
Assignment: FS 50
Retired: 7/24/1979

Firefighter III
Henry A. Munoz (Active Duty)
Deceased: 7/22/2021
Appointed: 5/21/2001
Assignment: FS 107

Engineer
Gary L. Kahler
Deceased: 7/22/2021
Appointed: 4/17/1971
Assignment: FS 23
Retired: 7/12/2008

Captain
James E. Craig
Deceased: 7/21/2021
Appointed: 2/4/1961
Assignment: FS 96
Retired: 2/11/1990

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.