By Edwin Folven, 4/26/2012
A roofer working with a torch sparked a fire at a house in Hancock Park last Saturday, causing major damage to the residence.
The blaze was reported around 12:30 p.m. at the residence at 857 S. Norton Ave., in the portion of Hancock Park south of Wilshire Boulevard. The fire started in a converted attic, and firefighters arrived to find smoke emanating from the building, according to Los Angeles Fire Department spokesperson Matt Spence.
Firefighters initially cut five holes in the roof to provide ventilation because personnel had difficulty reaching the blaze by going through the home. More firefighters were called to battle the blaze as the roof partially collapsed at the 92-year-old home. Approximately 65 firefighters extinguished the flames in 35 minutes, but clean-up efforts took several hours. Power lines to the residence also fell during the blaze, which required the assistance of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.
Spence said there were no reports of any injuries to firefighters, and one of the two occupants of the home suffered minor smoke inhalation and was treated at the scene.
The building was deemed uninhabitable, but the occupants declined assistance in relocating. The damage estimate was approximately $320,000.