Los Angeles’ USAR team gets called out to fatal house fire in order to stabilize structure.
Shortly before 1700 hours on 17 December, the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a house fire in the city’s Eagle Rock neighborhood. Firefighters arrived at 4920 East Stratford Road to find the single story private dwelling “fully involved” upon arrival.
With reports of an occupant inside crews tried to move in with handlines but were kept back due to the amount of fire and packrat conditions. Due to the worsening conditions, firefighters were forced to withdrawl and switch to defensive operations. Not long after their removal a majority of the roof collapsed.
Once the fire was extinguished, the USAR team was special-called. Specialists began work to shore up the structure so a thorough search for the victim could be conducted.
Two hours later, a handicapped elderly male was recovered. There were no reported firefighter injuries.
Reports described the conditions inside as being five to six-feet tall in some spots. The owner was also reportedly cited in the past for hoarding.
“House Fire In Eagle Rock Claims Life”, LAFD PIO
“Elderly man dies in Eagle Rock house fire”, ABC7
“Man is found dead after Highland Park house fire”, Los Angeles Times
“Man found dead inside burned LA home”, San Francisco Chronicle
Read more about Collyer Mansion fire news and tactics.