Cause of Intense Fire Revealed after 1 Person Killed, Others Injured at Venice Hotel


LOS ANGELES (CNS/KNX 1070) - According to the LAFD, a space heater that was too close to combustible materials (paper, clothing) caused the fire that chased more than 30 residents out of their residential hotel in Mid City.

One person was killed and five people were hurt today, including two in grave condition from injuries suffered in a fire that burned on both floors of the 28-unit Venice Hotel in the Mid City area of Los Angeles and forced at least one resident to jump from the upper floor to safety.

Firefighters were called to the hotel at 8686 Venice Boulevard, near Cattaraugus Avenue, just after 2 a.m. and discovered fire burning in several rooms, according to Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department. The blaze was later designated a greater alarm fire.

People were running for their lives and jumping from windows after a #fire broke out in a residential hotel on Venice Blvd in #LosAngeles early today. One person died. 30 others were left without a home. The Red Cross is here helping the victims. @KNX1070

— Jon Baird (@KNXBaird) February 7, 2020

Resident Narayana Cabral lived at the Venice Hotel for 19 years with his 60-year-old mother, who he said had to jump from a second-floor unit to safety when flames erupted.

"I got out the building, she was still stuck in there," Cabral told NBC4. "I heard her screaming for me, so I ran around the building to try to get to her, (but) there was so much smoke, so she had to jump out the window. She hit the ground hard, pretty concussed, swollen eye. Then I had to tear a fence down for her to be able to make it over, then I made a barricade for her to climb over... and I drove her to the hospital and she was in a lot of pain."

Cabral said his mother was hanging from a ledge, when her hands slipped and she landed on the sidewalk below.

The fire department has not confirmed the report the woman jumped to safety.

One person was declared dead at the scene. A man and woman were listed in grave condition and one person was in critical condition. All three were taken to a hospital. After the fire was extinguished, at least two other residents approached paramedics for treatement, LAFD Asst. Chief Jaime Moore said. The ages and names of those taken to a hospital were not disclosed.

No firefighters were injured.

A total of 105 firefighters extinguished the flames in 39 minutes and a knockdown was declared at 2:43 a.m., Humphrey said.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.