It was a little too exciting around here last night. A 3-alarm fire broke out at 8:45PM at the South Pasadena Public Works Department Yard at the corner of Orange Grove Avenue and Mission Street. Fire trucks from Alhambra, Arcadia, Glendale, Pasadena and San Marino assisted in knocking out the blaze by 10:15PM. A storage building basically burned to the ground, including a few city vehicles that were inside. The damage is estimated to be in the neighborhood of $1 million. The cause is under investigation.
As far as we know, there were no injuries. Thankfully, the historic Community Services building and beloved Orange Grove Park -- both right next door -- were spared.
I noticed a helicopter circling nearby around 9:00PM. That's not unusual for anywhere in Los Angeles. But, within minutes there were two more. I happened to be checking email and got a message from Mister Earl that while he was returning home from Trader Joes he had seen flames coming from what appeared to be the historic Community Services building.
I rushed to the scene so fast I forgot my tripod and I couldn't get close enough to use a flash, as evidenced by the blur above. I ran into Mister Earl and -- along with several dozen other South Pasadena residents and a cadre of journalists -- we watched as the firefighters tamped down the flames. Huge plumes of heavy smoke filled the skies for several hours. An entire city block was cordoned off, with police vehicles from both South Pas and San Marino. The Gold Line train was suspended until the fire was out. My house still smells like smoke even now.
That's enough excitement for one night.
My pictures are mostly blur, but you can see more pictures here and video here. Also, check out my overflow blog for an arty shot of Mister Earl and me at the scene.