On Sunday, January 14, 2007 at 1:13 AM, six Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, five LAFD Rescue Ambulances, one Urban Search and Rescue Unit, one EMS Battalion Captain, one Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, and one Division Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 49 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel under the direction of Assistant Chief Greg West responded to a series of Traffic Collisions in which one Firefighter was injured, on the southbound lanes of the San Diego (405) Freeway south of Ventura Boulevard in Sherman Oaks. Responding to a multi-vehicle collision with entrapment, Firefighters utilized the physical presence of a Fire Engine and its warning lights to provide protection as they commenced triage and extrication of the injured parties during a rare period of freezing temperatures.
Preliminary reports indicate that as Firefighters rendered aid to those involved in the aforementioned collision, an approaching motorist lost control of their vehicle, which came to rest near a parked LAFD Engine. As the Engineer who operated the heavy apparatus went to care for the motorist and lead them to safety, other vehicles collided before striking the Engineer and the earlier disabled car in ‘icy conditions’. The 34 year-old male, a six-year LAFD veteran, clad in safety attire, sustained facial trauma, including a fractured nose, and was briefly knocked unconscious. He was transported in fair condition to the UCLA Medical Center in Westwood, where he was expected to remain for observation.
Of the seven civilian motorists involved, only two required ambulance transport to area hospitals. Their conditions were not immediately available.
This series of traffic collisions is being investigated by California Highway Patrol Officers. The detailed circumstances involving the injury to the Fire Engineer remain the focus of a formal Los Angeles Fire Department investigation.
Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department