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Los Angeles Fire And Explosion Injures 11 Firefighters : NPR

Smoke rises from the scene of a fire and explosion in Los Angeles on Saturday that injured 11 firefighters.

Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP


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Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP

Smoke rises from the scene of a fire and explosion in Los Angeles on Saturday that injured 11 firefighters.

Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP

A fire and an explosion near downtown Los Angeles on Saturday left 11 firefighters injured, according to the fire department.

Firefighters arrived on scene around 6:30 p.m. PT, according to Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas.

While firefighters initially reported “moderate smoke” at the scene, Terrazas said they began an evacuation because of rising heat and smoke. The explosion occurred as the firefighters left the building.

According to Terrazas, a witness told officials firefighters were seen escaping from the roof with their coats in flames.

Dr. Marc Eckstein, LAFD’s medical director, said 11 firefighters were taken to County-USC Medical Center. All of them were “awake and alert” on arrival, and all are expected to survive. The injuries ranged from first- to third-degree burns. At least one firefighter is expected to require skin grafts.

Four were taken to the burn intensive care unit, while the others were taken to the burn ward, he said.

Eckstein said two firefighters were on ventilators because of “early indication of swelling of the airway.”

Dr. Carl Chudnofsky, chair of clinical emergency medicine at USC’s medical school, praised the team that treated the firefighters.

“This could have been horrendous,” he said.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom said on Twitter he was “grateful for the brave firefighters and first responders on scene battling these flames tonight.”

Terrazas said an on-scene investigation will take several days.



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Massive Explosion in Los Angeles, Multiple Buildings Burning, 230 Firefighters Responding — Ten Already Injured

A massive explosion at a marijuana product wholesale distributor in downtown Los Angeles has left multiple buildings burning.

Over 230 firefighters have responded to the blaze and ten have been injured.

The fire department issued a “mayday” call and characterized the incident as a “major emergency.”

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The business in the building is called “SmokeTokes Warehouse Distributor” and was making wholesale marijuana oil products using butane.

The same business had another massive fire in 2016.

KTLA reports that the blast occurred at approximately 6:30 pm while firefighters were responding to a fire at a one-story structure at 327 E. Boyd St., according to LAFD.

“We’re always worried about a secondary explosion, we don’t know what caused the first one and we’re trying to avoid this incident becoming even worse if the second one does happen,” Prange told KTLA.

Firefighters have not yet been able to enter the building where the initial explosion occurred.

“My thoughts are with our brave @LAFD firefighters,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted. “Closely tracking this situation as we continue to get more information.”

This is breaking news and we will update this report as more information becomes available.



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10 firefighters injured in EXPLOSION while responding to multi-building blaze in downtown Los Angeles (VIDEOS) — RT USA News

At least 10 firefighters have been injured in a blast while they were responding to a massive commercial building fire in downtown Los Angeles.

Firefighters initially responded to a report of a fire at a one-story commercial building, and there was “nothing unusual” until the explosion occurred once they entered the building.

The Los Angeles Fire Department  issued a major emergency “mayday” call, sending more than 200 others to the scene to contain the blaze that jumped to several neighboring buildings.

The condition of the injured was not immediately clear, while Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted: “My thoughts are with our brave @LAFD firefighters.”



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USNS Mercy Leaves Los Angeles Port After Treating a Few Dozen Patients

USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) approaches the pier in Los Angeles, March 27. (U.S. Marine Corps/Cpl. Alexa M. Hernandez)

In mid-March crazed Democrat Governor Gavin Newsom sent a letter to President Trump claiming that 25 million people in California would be infected with Coronavirus over an 8-week period.

Newsom asked President Trump in a letter on March 19 to deploy the USNS Mercy hospital ship “to help decompress our current healthcare delivery system in the Los Angeles region in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.”

“In the last 24 hours, we had 126 new COVID-19 cases, a 21 percent increase. In some parts of our state, our case rate is doubling every four days,” Newsom wrote. “Moreover, we have community acquired transmission in 23 counties with an increase of 44 community acquired infections in 24 hours.”

Newsom continued, “We project that roughly 56 percent of our population — 25.5 million people — will be infected with the virus over an eight week period.”

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Here we are 8 weeks later and California only has 71,000 confirmed Coronavirus cases and 2,934 deaths.

President Trump at the end of March sent the USNS Mercy to Los Angeles to assist with the Coronavirus pandemic.

Seven weeks later, the Mercy, equipped with 1,000 hospital beds, only treated a few dozen patients.

What a surge!

The USNS Mercy left Los Angeles on Thursday and headed back to its home port in San Diego.

NBC Los Angeles reported:

A Navy hospital ship temporarily docked in Los Angeles Harbor to help during the coronavirus crisis left for its home port on Friday.

The Mercy arrived at the end of March to provide beds for non-coronavirus cases to take the load off regional medical centers expecting a surge of COVID-19 patients. The floating hospital was docked in LA to help in the event of a patient surge as coronavirus spread trhough the region.

“Having successfully decompressed the health care delivery system in the Los Angeles region,” the Mercy will return to its home port in San Diego, said a statement by the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services.

Los Angeles has not experienced a surge in Coronavirus cases and the hospitals were never overwhelmed, but the county is on lockdown until August.

In fact, Mayor Eric Garcetti said Wednesday during an appearance on ABC’s “Good Morning America” that Los Angeles won’t completely reopen until there is a cure for Coronavirus.

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Los Angeles County to extend stay-at-home order another 3 MONTHS, stoking fears of civil unrest — RT USA News

LA County will likely extend its Covid-19 containment measures until the end of July, a top public health official said, triggering a wave of outrage as residents declare “summer cancelled” and even predict riots in the streets.

The three-month extension to the county’s “safer at home” order was announced by Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer on Tuesday. Though she stopped short of issuing an official order, Ferrer said the timetable would not shift until officials see a “dramatic change to the virus and tools at hand,” stressing the need for increased testing capacity.

Our hope is that by using the data, we’d be able to slowly lift restrictions over the next three months.

The prospect of another three months under what many have dubbed “house arrest” was not received well online, however, with many reacting as if summer itself had been called off.

Some critics voiced concerns about the economic impact the continued restrictions will have, asking whether any small businesses would be left to reopen after another three months on lockdown, forced to either remain closed or operate on a limited basis.

“LA county extending stay at home orders for another 3 months – what businesses will even be left to open?” one user asked.

The extended stay-at-home order comes as LA County prepares to loosen some of its other measures to stem the spread of the virus, with beaches set to reopen on Wednesday under tight restrictions, prohibiting most activities beyond swimming and walking. But even with the rules relaxing, some netizens saw rising discontent in LA’s future, as hundreds of thousands of residents grow restless under the shutdowns and unemployment offices drown in new claims.

While California has set statewide criteria for reopening, last month LA County’s board of supervisors issued its own guidelines, which include meeting certain benchmarks for hospital, ICU and testing capacities, putting measures in place to protect the immunocompromised and continued social distancing. To date, LA County has tallied more than 32,000 cases of Covid-19 – over half of them nursing home residents – and some 1,500 deaths.

With deaths and cases continuing to rise amid the outbreak, some netizens were glad to see the lockdown extended, a few even casting blame on those who have protested the measures, arguing that their refusal to comply is why the order was needed in the first place.

As much of California and many other states proceed with plans to reopen, Dr Anthony Fauci – a top member on the White House’s Covid-19 task force – warned on Tuesday that moving too quickly risks a reemergence of the virus that “we will not be able to control,” stressing that fall could see a new outbreak if containment measures are repealed too quickly.

Still the world’s top Covid-19 hotspot, the US has confirmed more than 1.3 million cases of the illness and in excess of 82,000 deaths, overtaking several of the next worst-affected nations combined.

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Los Angeles Sheriff Says Inmates Deliberately Trying to Catch Coronavirus to Force Prisons to Release More Criminals

Inmates in the Los Angeles County prison system are deliberately trying to contract the coronavirus so that they will be released, according to Sheriff Alex Villanueva.

During a press conference on Monday, Sheriff Villanueva said that some inmates believed that if more inmates caught the virus, it would force the county to begin releasing more inmates.

“There was some mistaken belief among the inmate population that if they tested positive, there was a way to force our hand and somehow release more inmates out of our jail environment, and that’s not gonna happen,” he said.

The prison system has seen a 60% jump in cases of the virus in just one week.

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The sheriff also played a video of inmates passing around a hot water bottle and each drinking from it before having their temperatures taken by a nurse.

“With the hot water, they were trying to falsely elevate their temperature readings to generate a symptom for COVID-19,” Villanueva said.

Footage also showed inmates crowding together instead of social distancing and passing around a mask they all breathed into.

“Then all of a sudden we saw a spike, a few weeks, ago, a very noticeable jump, and we couldn’t really understand why, when everything seemed to be going the way we wanted to,” Villanueva said.

CBS Los Angeles reports that since February, L.A. County’s inmate population has been reduced from 17,000 – the largest in the nation — to currently a little over 11,700.

“Had this pandemic swept through while we were sitting on 17,000 inmates, the results would have been catastrophic,” Villanueva said.

As of Monday, 357 inmates have tested positive and 117 of those inmates have recovered.

“There’s a reason why these people are behind bars to begin with, because they violated the norms of society,” Villanueva said. “But to then imperil not only their only safety, but the safety of their fellow inmates who did not want to participate in this behavior. It also endangers all the personnel, both the professional staff and the sworn staff.”

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Prince Harry Concedes ‘Life Changed Dramatically’ in First Los Angeles Video Since Departure From UK

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The Duke of Sussex, who formally ditched his royal duties late last month, addressed the veterans and physically handicapped servicemen who take part in his sporty brainchild, the Invictus Games, in a bid to cheer them up as this year’s event has been delayed due to the coronavirus.

In an expressive video message this Victory Day weekend, Prince Harry, speaking from his new Los Angeles home, affirmed that there has of late been dramatic changes in everyone’s life.

The 35-year-old made the special recording dedicated to what would have been the now delayed opening ceremony of The Invictus Games 2020, in the Netherlands, so as to cheer up fans and the Invictus community amid the persisting across-the-board lockdown.

“Life has changed dramatically for all of us since I was last in the Hague, but the IG2020 team has done an incredible job to adapt so quickly to the situation and they are busy putting plans in place for next year”, Harry explained at length, adding the new dates will be shared with the public in the near future.

The Duke of Sussex expressed hope that all of those in the Invictus family are “coping well” and giving a helping hand to each other at this tumultuous time. “I continue to hear amazing stories of families coming together over online platforms, but please, look out for those who have gone quiet or that are no longer visible on the chat sites”, the ex-royal said.

He welcome the planned virtual activities that he hopes would see the Invictus community become engaged, “because you never know, it might be fun and a change from the norm”.

“Throughout this week we will be seeing and hearing from many Invictus competitors; their experience and resilience in dealing with mental health challenges is something we could all learn lessons from”, Harry remarked, going on to praise medical staffers’ tremendous efforts as the healthcare crisis rages on.

He further expressed his delight about the Invictus Games Foundation preparing a virtual conference with international speakers and participants expected to share “their thoughts and experience of resilience and why the Invictus spirit is so important”.

“Stay safe, and stay tuned”, the Invictus Games board posted on Instagram, in a caption to Harry’s video. The Duke created the adaptive multi-sport tournament in 2014 in London after being inspired by a similar large-scale event overseas – the US Warrior Games.

In it, wounded and sick armed services personnel and veterans compete in nine sports including wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball, and indoor rowing.

Last month, the Duke, together with his wife Meghan Markle and now 1-year-old son crossed into the US from Canada, where they briefly stayed after exiting their senior royal roles, right at the onset of the corona quarantine measures.

They are believed to have moved to Los Angeles, where Meghan spent her youth, to get closer to her mother Doria and lead a personally and financially independent life.

The couple, who are now free of their senior royal functions, are understood to have zeroed in on efforts to set up a US-based foundation –named Archewell after their son Archie Harrison – that would focus on well-being and lifestyle in a broad sense.

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