Laguna Beach firefighters successfully put out a house fire on Wilson Street early Monday morning, the cause of which is still under investigation.
Pat Cary, Laguna Beach firefighter and spokesperson, said a call from neighbors who smelled smoke came in around 12:30 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 21. Laguna Engine 1 arrived on scene and found a three-story home—two levels above ground with one sub-level—had smoke and fire showing from the second floor on the driveway side.
A total of 30 to 35 firefighters responded to the working structure fire, and all four Laguna fire engines were on scene, along with battalion divison 2 and resources from OCFA and Newport Beach Fire Department.
Cary said it took about 20-25 minutes to knock the fire down utilizing an “aggressive interior firefighting attack,” which entails bringing in hose lines to extinguish flames with water and having crews cut holes in the roof of the building for vertical ventilation, which allows super heated gases and smoke to expel.
After that, Cary said firefighters stayed on scene for hours making sure all hotspots were out and pulling off drywall to ensure there weren’t hidden fires. During that process, firefighters also conducted a salvage operation, where remove as many of the homeowners’ valuables from the house as possible to avoid damage by smoke, water or fire.
The house sustained extensive damage and is not liveable, Cary said. The fire is currently being investigated by Laguna Beach Fire Department investigators; no cause has been determined yet.
Cary said no homeowners were home at the time of the fire, and there were no civilian or firefighter injuries.