Firefighters waged a defensive battle Sunday evening against flames showing through the roof of a previously burned single-story commercial building downtown.

The fire was reported at 10:31 p.m. at 1501 E. 17th St., according to Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart.

More than 70 firefighters put out the bulk of the flames in 34 minutes and prevented the fire from spreading to an adjacent building, Stewart said.

Firefighters continued to spray water on an exposed gas line that burned while waiting for the gas company to arrive and turn it off, she said.

No injuries were reported and motorists were asked to avoid the area through the night, she said.

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