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L.A. high-rise fire: Building predates state law requiring sprinklers

October 18, 2013|By Joseph Serna

The 25-story West Los Angeles high-rise where an 11th-floor fire erupted Friday is not required to have sprinkler system throughout the building under state fire codes.

L.A. fire officials said the Barrington Plaza apartments in the 11700 block of Wilshire Boulevard is not equipped with a sprinkler system, but because it was built 52 years ago, it does not fall under state regulations adopted in 1974 that require buildings taller than 75 feet to include such fire-suppression systems.

Two residents suffered smoke-related injuries after the blaze broke out about 11:45 a.m. Within minutes, huge plumes of black smoke were billowing out of several windows and flames began to climb up the exterior.

Three balconies above the blaze were scorched black from the fire. The building is nearly 380,000 square feet and has 472 units.

In less than an hour much of the smoke and flames had subsided and the blaze was mostly contained with crews checking apartments for other hot spots. More than 200 firefighters were dispatched to the blaze, which was "mostly contained" shortly after 1 p.m., fire department spokesman Brian Humphrey said.

Residents on and above the 11th floor, though not all of them, heeded the fire alarm and evacuated, Humphrey said. At least two residents were being treated for smoke inhalation, with one being taken to the hospital, he added.

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joseph.serna@latimes.com

Twitter: @josephserna

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