Encino apartment building fire: Elderly mother, son killed

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Friday, August 29, 2014
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Two people were killed in a fire at a three-story apartment building in Encino Thursday night, Los Angeles Fire Department officials said.

ENCINO, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Two people were killed in a fire at a three-story apartment building in Encino Thursday night.

The blaze broke out in a third-floor unit in the 5300 block of Lindley Avenue around 9 p.m. It took more than 100 firefighters to fully extinguish the flames in about one hour. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Fire officials said a 98-year-old mother was found dead in her bed, and her 74-year-old son was found dead outside on the balcony. Seven other people were injured, including a firefighter who suffered a hand injury.

Firefighters said the home had smoke alarms, but they did not appear to be working properly. Officials said this is becoming a more common problem, and they planned to distribute free smoke alarms and fire safety information to residents in the neighborhood Friday morning.

Because the fire occurred at a condominium complex, it is the responsibility of residents to make sure they have working smoke alarms inside their units. But in this case, the building owners were cited because the smoke detectors in the common hallways were not working.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

There have been 20 fatalities related to a structure fire in Los Angeles this year, according to the LAFD.