Junk cars in the Pick Your Part salvage yard in Sun Valley caught fire Sunday afternoon, turning into what the LAFD declared a "major emergency fire" that sent up a smoke plume visible across the San Fernando Valley and beyond.
The first firefighters to arrive found 15 junk cars burning and winds blowing the flames across the yard, which is packed tightly with cars being stored for dismantling, recycling or sale. Over an acre and a half of the giant yard on Tujunga Avenue ended up involved, the LAFD says. More than 150 firefighters eventually were needed.
From the department's press team:
Waves of firefighters were systematically requested and strategically deployed to surround the inferno. Firefighters fought the fire in a “defensive mode,” pouring water on the blaze from the exterior of the auto yard. Firefighters worked closely with the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to ensure sufficient water pressure was maintained.
Over 150 firefighters, under the command of Assistant Chief Gregory Reynar, extinguished the flames in two hours and 16 minutes. However, firefighters remained on-scene through the night to ensure no significant flare-ups. Specialized LAFD Hazardous-Materials firefighters took samples of the water runoff and surrounding air to ensure the safety of all. Due to firefighters extensive efforts, no structures were threatened and no one was injured.
This is a different giant Sun Valley self-serve junkyard than the one that closed down at the start of the year. That one, U-Pick Parks, sent some of its left over cars to Pick your Part at the end of last year.
Photo distributed by LAFD: Rick McClure