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Probe continues into blaze destroying South LA church


Authorities this week continued an investigation into the cause of a major emergency fire that destroyed a two-story church in the South Park area of Los Angeles and left three firefighters injured.

The fire was reported at 2:22 a.m. Sept. 11 at Victory Baptist Church, 4802 S. McKinley Ave., and about 150 firefighters were ultimately sent to the scene, according to Nicholas Prange of the Los Angeles Fire Department.

“Crews initially made entry to find heavy smoke inside the structure,” Prange said in a statement. “As firefighters made entry, inevitably introducing more air to the conditions inside, fire behavior worsened quickly.

“Approximately 30 minutes after the arrival of firefighters, there was a structural collapse inside, trapping several LAFD members,” Prange said. “Two consecutive mayday calls were put out on the radio alerting the fire ground of trapped firefighters. Nearby crews quickly effected a rescue of three firefighters. One was transported immediately to a local hospital in moderate condition, while a second finished battling the fire and was transported in fair condition.”