3-alarm fire erupts at sprawling industrial building in Commerce

Saturday, May 6, 2023
3-alarm fire erupts at sprawling industrial building in Commerce
More than 100 firefighters responded to a massive fire that erupted at a sprawling commercial building in Commerce.

COMMERCE, Calif. (KABC) -- A massive fire erupted Friday morning at a commercial building in Commerce, prompting a response from more than 100 firefighters who attacked the blaze from all sides of the structure.

The three-alarm blaze began shortly before 4 a.m. at a structure measuring 350 feet by 350 feet in the 6500 block of Flotilla Street, near Garfield Avenue, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. The roof of the single-story building quickly collapsed. It took firefighters more than 13 hours to gain control of the fire.

No injuries were reported. No one was believed to be inside the structure, a furniture-distribution warehouse, when the inferno began.

"When we arrived, it was smoke and fire through the roof," fire Capt. Sheila Kelliher-Berkoh told ABC7. "It was a massive fire."

Firefighters were using aerial ladders to attack the flames, which were visible from 20 miles away.

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Los Angeles County health officials are monitoring the environmental impact in the area, saying particulate levels are slightly above the Environmental Protection Agency standard. They say people with respiratory illness or underlying health conditions are urged to stay indoors.

Furniture stored at the warehouse included plastic items that produced thick, toxic smoke that drifted into some neighborhoods.

Some businesses in the immediate area were ordered to shut down operations for Friday.

"I was just hoping for the safety of everyone here and hoping that our stuff didn't catch fire," said business owner Michael Main.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.