Firefighters responded after the blaze broke out at the three-story house in the 4500 block of Via Corona, according to the Torrance Fire Department. Flames were emanating from all three levels of the home, forcing the firefighters to transition "from an offensive to defensive strategy" due to poor access to the structure, the agency said.
The victim, a man in his 70s, was not hurt in the fire but suffered a cardiac incident at the time. He was transported to a hospital and listed in stable condition.
Photos released by the fire department showed firefighters attacking the flames with fire hoses on the ground and from an aerial ladder positioned on the hillside.
The fire was brought under control at 11:45 a.m., with fire crews continuing to address hidden spot fires and assess the structural integrity of the house.
Investigators were working to determine the cause of the incident.
"We did have a partial collapse of one of the floors, so there's some burning material that's stacked on top of itself, so just having a hard time accessing a complete extinguishment on this," said Torrance FD Asst.Chief Robert Millea.