100 Firefighters Extinguish Blaze at Commercial Building in Boyle Heights

Nearly 100 firefighters battled to extinguish a blaze at a commercial building in Boyle Heights in the early hours of Thursday morning.

It took 2 hours and 22 minutes to put out the fire at the one-story building at 3724 Whittier Boulevard, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. The fire started around 12:14 a.m.

A furniture store, a kitchen cabinet store and a sewing shop are all housed there, all three were badly damaged. Two of the three businesses were uninsured.

It is unknown if there were fire sprinklers or functional smoke alarms inside.

The owner of the cabinet store, where the fire is believed to have started, was too devestated to speak, however he did say he was uninsured, and had lost thousands of dollars worth of inventory.

"I feel bad for everything that happened. Everything got damaged, all the machines, all the wood, $3,000 worth of wood, and it just all got burned down," said a former employee, Eric Sanchez. "They had three kitchens done and it just all got burned down as well."

Initially firefighters tried to tackle the fire both from the roof and inside, but had to evacuate as the flames spread aggressively.

They changed tactics and poured water into the building using ladders. It was not until just before 2:30 a.m. when they were able to safely bring hoses inside to extinguish unseen hotspots.

One firefighter was treated for smoke inhalation, but there were no other injuries reported in the fire.

LAFD arson investigators are working to determine the cause of fire, and the estimated damage is being tabulated.

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