By LILY TINOCO | Reporter
Los Angeles Fire Department firefighters responded to a fire that broke out at Palisades Branch Library on Thursday, October 8, in the morning.
“An automatic alarm with several sprinkler activations was upgraded to a structure fire by (the) first arriving truck at a library,” Nicholas Prange of LAFD said in a statement.
The fire was first reported at 7:10 a.m., prompting a swift response from not only LAFD Stations 23 and 69, but also 19, Task Force 63, Rescue 69 and Battalion 9.
Captain Robert Bates said a fire sprinkler was able to keep the fire contained until firefighters arrived and did the final extinguishment.
“Firefighters saved nearly all of the books inside, while extinguishing the flames and stopping the water flow from automatic fire sprinklers,” Prange said.
The 28 firefighters on scene were able to complete salvage work, covering books and trying to keep the water off of them. Bates said the books looked like they would be salvageable.
“There was a lot of the library that kept from getting damaged because the guys did such great work on the salvage operations to protect it,” Bates said to the Palisadian-Post. “They protected a lot of the interior of the library just from further damage with that sprinkler head going off.”
Upon arrival, firefighters also worked to cut around the burnt material on the roof: “We had to do a lot of cutting just to check for extensions, that’s our normal operation,” Bates said.
It took roughly an hour to extinguish the “stubborn fire,” which appears to have started in the attic.
All Los Angeles Public Library branches remain closed to the public because of COVID-19 precautions, according to the library’s website. Although some “Library To Go” service is available at selected libraries, the Palisades Branch is not one of them, according to the website.
The cause of the fire was still under investigation as the Post went to print Tuesday evening. Representatives from Los Angeles Public Library did not respond to requests for comments at press time.
City News Service contributed to this report.
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