Firefighters narrowly escaped injury Friday morning when a facade collapsed as they were battling a blaze at a Boyle Heights strip mall.
The fire broke out at about 1:47 a.m. at the strip mall located in the 2100 block of East Whittier Boulevard, said Capt. Daniel Curry of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
Fire officials saw the danger of a collapse developing and decided to go into a defensive posture.
“When they come under heavy fire they are prone to falling down and either trapping firefighters or hitting them on the head,” Curry said.
Commanders pulled everyone out of the building and off of the roof about 10 minutes before the facade came crashing down, Curry said.
The strip mall, which was badly damaged from the fire, housed a Domino's Pizza, a laundromat and two unoccupied units, according to Curry.
About 75 firefighters battled the flames for nearly an hour before knocking down the fire, Margaret Stewart of the Fire Department stated in a news bulletin.
No injuries were reported and arson investigators were called to the scene, Curry said.