OTJ Calif sidebar: Explosions & Heavy Fire at Facility Processing Titanium and Super Alloy Scrap

LOS ANGELES, CA, JUNE 11, 2010 – At 11 A.M., 36 companies of Los Angeles firefighters, 16 rescue ambulances, two arson units, one urban search and rescue (USAR) unit, two hazardous materials teams, one helicopter, four EMS battalion captains, seven Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams and one Division Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 248 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel, as well as Los Angeles County Fire Department staff responding on mutual aid, all under the direction of LAFD Deputy Chief Mario Rueda, responded to a major-emergency industrial fire at 900 East Slauson Ave. in South Los Angeles.

Responding to numerous cell phone callers providing non-specific information regarding one or more explosions and a well-established fire, Los Angeles firefighters quickly arrived at United Alloys and Metals to find heavy fire at an industrial facility known for processing titanium and super alloy scrap. Firefighters came to the immediate aid of a worker critically injured by an earlier explosion and fire, as they brought huge volumes of water to bear upon intense flames encompassing a 150-by-100-foot area that included titanium shavings in large bins and containers. Despite subsequent explosions and resultant precautions, the first-arriving 160 firefighters controlled the blaze in just two hours and 22 minutes.

Along with the critically injured civilian, one Los Angeles police officer suffered a minor injury during the fire. Both were taken to an area hospital by LAFD Ambulance. The ensuing investigation and stabilization of the scene kept scores of Los Angeles firefighters on site for more than 24 hours.

Los Angeles Fire Department