Fire Engulfs Several Businesses in Mar Vista

Firefighters were forced to take a defensive posture.

A building in Mar Vista housing seven businesses went up in flames today, snarling traffic and possibly causing a power outage that left more than 900 people without power in the area.

The fire was reported just before noon at 3519 Centinela Ave., near Palms Boulevard, according to Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey.

The seven businesses share a common attic, Humphrey said.

The department called the fire a "major emergency," and dispatched 119 firefighters to the scene, Humphrey added. The stubborn flames inside the 9,200 square foot block row of businesses took about 95 minutes to knockdown.

The building was 69 years-old, Humphrey continued.

One of the companies included a a swimming pool chemical supply company, according to the fire department.

About 945 Los Angeles Department of Water and Power customers lost power in the aftermath of the blaze, according to utility spokeswoman Ellen Chang.

It's unclear at this point if the outage was caused by the fire, Chang said. Repair crews are at the scene and trying to determine the cause of the power failure. There's no word yet on how long it will take to restore power to the LADWP customers, she added.

No injuries were reported.

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