Two men were in critical condition with severe burns and a third man suffered unspecified injuries from a “major emergency” fire Saturday triggered by an explosion at a one-story commercial building in downtown Los Angeles.
Surveillance video shown on KNBC4 showed the moment of the explosion, with debris flying out of the roof of the building.
Firefighters dispatched at 12:05 p.m. to 743 S. Kohler St. took “defensive firefighting operations” in battling the blaze and had the fire out within 65 minutes of their arrival, said Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
Paramedics rushed the injured victims to area hospitals.
The structure was described as a one-story, 50-feet-by-100-feet business in a block-long row of commercial structures, said Humphrey, who added that 140 fire department personnel were at the scene.
The fire sent a black plume of smoke into the sky that was visible for miles.
“The involved business name and contents of the burning building have yet to be determined,” he said.
The cause of the explosion was under investigation.