PACIFIC PALISADES, LOS ANGELES (KABC) --Five people were injured, two critically, after a fire ripped through two houses, including the home of a Swedish TV star, Thursday morning in Pacific Palisades, authorities said.
Firefighters responded at about 2:15 a.m. to a hillside home in the 16500 block of W. Las Casas Place, where the first floor was well involved in flames, the Los Angeles Fire Department said in a statement.
The blaze spread to an adjacent residence before being extinguished by 88 firefighters in 44 minutes, according to the news release. Only about 10 feet separated the two homes and many feared the blaze could spread to more homes. Officials said they were helped by the weather as it was a cool morning with little wind.
"The home to the left had a family of four, (including) a husband and a wife who sadly suffered critical injuries, smoke inhalation as well as the 53-year-old female had second and third degree burns," said Capt. Erik Scott with the Los Angeles Fire Department.
One victim who was able to get out of the fire in time was identified as Swedish reality star Gunilla Persson.
"I woke up hearing like firecrackers and it was very scary. I didn't know what it was. At first I thought someone was having a party or something strange going on and then I ran to my daughter's room and saw the staircase being full of flames," Persson explained.
Persson was able to escape the fire along with her elderly mother, Iris, and daughter, Erika, 14. Persson, who appears in "Svenska Hollywoodfruar," or "Swedish Hollywood Wives," said her cat died in the fire.
Firefighters were able to rescue a dog and cat from the blaze.
Officials said the homes had smoke detectors, but it was unclear whether they were functioning properly. Witnesses said they never heard any alarms.
The fire department said the cause of the fire remained under investigation, but there were indications the fire may have started in some grass behind the home and in between the two properties.