SAN PEDRO, Calif. (KTLA) — Fire officials said at least 14 people were hurt when a motel went up in flames in San Pedro.
The blaze broke out around 3:30 a.m. Tuesday at the Palos Verdes Inn at 1001 S. Palos Verdes Avenue.
A fire company that was coming back from an emergency medical response spotted the smoke.
“What they encountered was a two-story apartment building with heavy fire on the first floor in the rear,” said LAFD Capt. Jaime Moore.
“It was fully occupied. This is 14 units with people living inside, and people threatening to jump because of the smoke and heat being generated by this fire.”
Firefighters were able to extinguish the flames in about 15 to 20 minutes.
The LAFD treated 14 people for injuries. Twelve of the injured were transported to the hospital, including three in critical condition.
One person suffered third-degree burns, one had severe smoke inhalation and a third person suffered broken bones from jumping from the second story.
The burn victim and the patient with respiratory problems were in grave condition, Moore said.
The cause of the fire was not immediately known. Arson investigators were at the scene.
“One of the big concerns is how quickly this fire traveled and how hot it was,” Moore said.
“We do know it had smoke alarms and they were functioning. However, they were quickly overcome by the amount of smoke and heat being generated by the fire.”
He said an accelerant-detecting K-9 was being brought to the scene to assist in the investigation.