Friday, October 12, 2007

Holy I-5 Cluster...*

...Batman. So it's rare when Batt. 12 from LAFD checks in on OCD 8 and tells the dispatcher in the middle of a rainstorm that LACoFD is on scene at the interchange of the Golden State (5) and Antelope Valley (14) freeways with multiple tractor trailers fully involved with fire on both the north and southbound lanes of the designated truck lanes. Further, he has multiple other accidents up and down that stretch of freeway.

Sounds like a Class 1 clusterfuck. LAFD has dispatched a full physical rescue assignment and the County has thrown a ton of resources at it, too. LAFD has a helo moving up there for observation. The CHP CAD is pretty wild to look at. It's incident #3700 on the CAD. The CHP is shutting down the 5 in both directions, which is a rare occurrence except if it's snowing in the Grapevine.

It's such a mess up there that the County and City have been unable to establish a joint-command and it's every man for himself. Adding to the problem is lack of water supply on the freeway to assist in extinguishing the multiple big-rigs that are exploding and burning. LAFD has a Foam Carrier en route. LAFD Fire 6 (observation helo) had to return to Van Nuys Airport due to the low clouds and solid IFR conditions.

Expect this one to have a fatality or two and keep the freeway shutdown well into the day tomorrow!

***UPDATE*** As of 0010 hours, multiple big-rigs are still fully involved inside the truck-lane tunnels on Interstate 5. City and County fire units are using master streams and wagon batteries from their engines to direct water into the tunnels in an attempt to extinguish the flames. There is also a serious HAZMAT issue with runoff from the water used to fight the burning trucks (and their contents). Totally crazy. Nine patients transported by LAFD. Unknown number via LACoFD.

As of now, LAFD Division 3 is o/s and in charge, about 100 yards east of the tunnel. Unified command with LACoFD has been established. The entire tunnel is on fire, with multiple explosions from the trucks burning inside. The incident itself is classified in the County jurisdiction, according to Division 3, but all LAFD resources on scene are being used to aid the County.

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