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Cause Of Brentwood High Rise Fire Still Being Investigated

What caused a fire to break out in a Brentwood high-rise building about three months ago has not yet been fully determined, but fire officials believe the blaze may have been caused by “discarded smoking material.”

An updated blog post on the Los Angeles Fire Dept. (LAFD) website earlier this month added the cause of the fire is still “undetermined.”

The financial loss of the blaze is still being tabulated, according to the updated blog post.

A fire broke out Oct. 18, 2013, at the 25-story Building A of Barrington Plaza, injuring three firefighters and exposing seven residents to smoke. Five of those residents were treated for smoke-related trauma at area hospitals. One of those treated was a two-year-old girl who was found in a stairwell by her grandfather, according to firefighters. She was reportedly in critical condition.

According to fire officials, a pet dog perished in the Oct. 18 fire.

In all, 214 LAFD personnel were required to put out the high-rise fire, which took about 45 minutes to confine and 71 minutes after first report to fully extinguish. An estimated 100 to 150 residents from at least 51 units on the ninth, tenth, and eleventh floors within Barrington Plaza’s Building A were immediately displaced because of the fire.

“While scores of residents took immediate and appropriate action to evacuate the building by stairway when the noontime fire erupted, others were delayed in their departure and required assistance from firefighters and other building occupants,” the updated blog post stated.

News reports indicated many of those residents were still displaced days after the fire was put out.

The LAFD blog post stated a fire was reported at about 11:43 a.m. Oct. 18. The report indicated the blaze was in an eleventh floor apartment unit.

“Firefighters arrived quickly by ground and air to find heavy smoke showing from a two-bedroom unit on the 11th floor of Building A at the Barrington Plaza apartments,” the blog post stated.

The blog post also stated rotating teams of 347 firefighters were on the scene for more than 55 hours after the blaze was reported.

LAFD officials estimate about 700 residents live in the 240-unit Building A of Barrington Plaza’s 240 units.

Barrington Plaza’s Building A was not equipped with a fire sprinkler system. The building was built in 1961, when fire codes did not require new structures to have fire sprinklers. When fire codes were updated, buildings such as Barrington Plaza were grandfathered and allowed to remain occupied without having to install fire sprinklers.

Barrington Plaza is located on the 11700 block of Wilshire Boulevard. Building A is one of three buildings on site.

Brentwood News will update this story as more information is released about the official cause and amount of financial damaged incurred.

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