Simi Valley Buyers Fire extinguished quickly upon VCFD arrival

Michael+Weisenberg%2C+a+Ventura+County+Fire+Department+battalion+chief%2C+Left%2C+talks+to+Paul+Brown%2C+a+Red+Cross+disaster+action+team+supervisor%2C+Right%2C+about+the+current+situation+regarding+the+Buyers+Fire+in+Simi+Valley+on+Oct.+15.+Photo+credit%3A+Ryan+Bough
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Simi Valley Buyers Fire extinguished quickly upon VCFD arrival

Michael Weisenberg, a Ventura County Fire Department battalion chief, Left, talks to Paul Brown, a Red Cross disaster action team supervisor, Right, about the current situation regarding the Buyers Fire in Simi Valley on Oct. 15. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

Michael Weisenberg, a Ventura County Fire Department battalion chief, Left, talks to Paul Brown, a Red Cross disaster action team supervisor, Right, about the current situation regarding the Buyers Fire in Simi Valley on Oct. 15. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

Michael Weisenberg, a Ventura County Fire Department battalion chief, Left, talks to Paul Brown, a Red Cross disaster action team supervisor, Right, about the current situation regarding the Buyers Fire in Simi Valley on Oct. 15. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

Michael Weisenberg, a Ventura County Fire Department battalion chief, Left, talks to Paul Brown, a Red Cross disaster action team supervisor, Right, about the current situation regarding the Buyers Fire in Simi Valley on Oct. 15. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

By Ryan Bough

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A small apartment fire was reported at 9:42 a.m. at 4268 E Los Angeles Ave, Simi Valley. The fire, named the Buyers Fire, was quickly extinguished in approximately 45 minutes. The cause of the fire is currently undetermined.

According to a tweet by the VCFD PIO, firefighters were able to knock down the fire and contain it to one unit. Michael Weisenberg, a Ventura County Fire Department battalion chief explains how they approached and confronted the fire.

“Units responded to a structure fire in a commercial occupancy, once on scene there was smoke showing from one occupancy with some extension to the roof,” stated Weisenberg. “Crews made an aggressive interior attack and did a primary search finding that all occupants were out of the building.”

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A VCFD firefighter begins to detach a fire hose after extinguishing the Buyers Fire in Simi Valley on Oct. 15. The cause of the fire is currently undetermined. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

The fire was immediately noticed by employees at a Cell Energy Inc. which is directly next to the apartment complex. Carlos Ramos, the general manager, explained his actions as the event unfolded.

“My co-worker was in the back and was complaining about the smell of smoke, I looked over to the building next door and there was smoke coming out of the door so we went and made sure everyone was out of the building then called the police.”

Firefighters arrived on the scene a little over five minutes later and part of Los Angeles Avenue was shut down. The American Red Cross was also called in to assist the occupants of the building.

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Paul Brown, a Red Cross Disaster Action Team supervisor, right, speaks to a VCFD firefighter about the Buyers Fire in Simi Valley on Oct. 15. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

“We don’t come out until everything is under control. If I get out here the fire is out and things are relatively safe,” said Paul Brown, a Red Cross Disaster Action Team supervisor. “We get a text from the fire department, requesting our assistance, so when somebody is displaced they call us and we go out and provide financial help and get them resources.”

Since the fire started on the second floor of the building, firefighters had to use a special technique to ensure the fire didn’t spread to nearby units. Weisenberg describes the process that the firefighters took.

“Before we perform vertical ventilation we have hose lines in place underneath, if you can envision it’s almost like taking the top off a pot. So we take the top off the pot you have an immediate burst of all the steam and stuff inside, and it’s the same thing here.” Explained Weisenberg. “We want to get the superheated gasses and smoke out of the space so we can get the hose line in and extinguish it.”

Even the smallest fires draw fear in the aftermath of both the Wendy Fire and Saddleridge Fire. Weisenberg concluded by stating, “We contained it to one unit, all the other units were saved, all the property was saved, all the people were accounted for, so overall it’s a success.”

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