Margaret Carrero

More than 100 Firefighters Control Fire at Abandoned Church in University Park Area

October 04, 2018 - 9:46 am

(CNS/KNX 1070) -  Firefighters today were working to fully extinguish a fire in a vacant church in the University Park area near downtown Los Angeles.

The fire was reported about 6:25 a.m. in the two-story building in the 700 block of West Washington Boulevard, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

The firefighters went into a defensive mode -- fighting the fire from the exterior -- in an effort to prevent the flames from spreading to other structures. No injuries were reported.

After about three hours, more than 100 firefighters appeared to have gained the upper hand on the flames but worked to fully extinguish smoldering materials.

The multi-agency House of Worship Task Force was sent to the scene, and the cause of the fire was under investigation.

According to the LAFD, the structure was built in the 1920s, and served as the site of a mortuary and later several houses of worship. The building has been red-tagged, and structural engineers with the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety were sent to determine if it was safe for occupancy.

Traffic was routed away from the area while an investigation was conducted.

An arson task force will be investigating the fire. A spokesman for Los Angeles County Fire says they had to attack it from the outside because of concerns of collapse.

KNX reporter Margaret Carrero:

This story is developing.

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