L.A. Fire Captain Knocked Unconscious by Blast

A veteran Los Angeles fire captain was injured after an explosion at a car fire rendered him unconscious on Jan. 9.

Engine 1 responded the fire at 546 West Solano Avenue shortly after 9 p.m. on Jan. 9 near the Arroyo Seco Parkway in Elysian Park, according to a department report.

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Crews found a 2000 Chevy Impala fully involved and used a 1-and-a-half-inch line to attack the blaze but had problems containing it.

The sedan began leaking fuel, which ignited. It was attacked with a dry chemical extinguisher while the engineer established a 2-and-a-half-inch supply line.

The captain directed both firefighters to establish an additional line for Class B foam application and as they were establishing the line, the captain observed fire in the passenger compartment and attacked the fire with the initial attack line.

The application of water to the fire around the steering column caused a violent explosion, forcing the captain backwards and causing him to hit his head on the pavement.

He was rendered unconscious and was assessed by fellow firefighters.

The captain was transported by ambulance to a local hospital with serious head injuries and remains hospitalized in fair condition.

The cause of the fire and explosion is being investigated.

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