Cause of Echo Park Building Fire Unknown

Officials investigate building destroyed in overnight blaze

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Fire crews on Tuesday night extinguished a stubborn blaze that ripped through a commercial building near the Hollywood Freeway in Echo Park. Annette Arreola reports for Today in LA on Wednesday Oct. 10, 2012.

    Arson investigators Wednesday were combing through the remains of a three-story commercial building in Echo Park that was engulfed in flames overnight.

    The cause of the blaze has not yet been determined, although it appears the fire started in a vegetation patch alongside the building, according to witnesses.

    "We believe it started at the lower level and extended all the way to the third floor. This is a hill-side occupancy, a business," LA City Fire Division Chief Ralph Ross said.

    It was first reported shortly before 10 p.m. Tuesday at 1625 Palo Alto Ave., adjacent to the southbound 101 Freeway. It took a total of 125 firefighters more than 90 minutes to knock down the blaze.

    Multiple lanes were closed on the freeway and traffic was backed up for miles.

    "It had a lot of intensity to it. It was surprising that it didn't go out as quickly as I thought I would," Ross said.

    The three-story building housed multiple companies, including title loan and printing businesses.

    No injuries were reported.

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