Firefighters' efforts to knock down a major apartment complex blaze in Anaheim were hampered by a broken hydrant, investigators said.
"Approximately seven to 10 minutes after (fire crews') arrival, water was delivered effectively to the west end of the building and interior attic spaces," said a report issued by authorities on the July 3 fire that destroyed 40 units and damaged 30 others at the Casa de Valencia apartments on East La Palma Avenue.
Normally, the city fire chief said after the report was released, "that would take about three minutes from the time they arrived."
The carefully worded report was made public after the first lawsuit growing out of the fire was filed by a resident who had lost everything.
The threat of such lawsuits had city officials concerned because just a week ago, Anaheim decided to do away with costly liability insurance, meaning it must pay any court judgments against it from its own resources.