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Fire Destroys Hillside Home in Studio City

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Seen from a side street below, white smokes rises after the fire was contained | Photo by Zach Behrens

Seen from a side street below, white smokes rises after the fire was contained | Photo by Zach Behrens
The Los Angeles Fire Department began receiving 911 calls from all over the city early this morning. In Universal City, a fire station said they could see a blaze to the west. A caller driving on the 101 Freeway reported a fire on the Santa Monica Mountains. From the air, a LAPD helicopter called it in.

Shortly before 12:30 a.m., the fire broke out at 3580 Avenida del Sol, a narrow street in the hills south of Ventura Boulevard and behind Harvard-Westlake School off Coldwater Canyon. 36 minutes later, the fire was knocked down, but the damage had been done -- the single story 2,051 square-foot home was destroyed. The good news, the fire department reported, was that the no one was harmed. An adjacent 833 square-foot building on the premises was spared.

Directly down the hill on Goodland Drive, neighbors gathered on the cul de sac where a fire company from Hollywood sat ready just in case the blaze turned into a brush fire. "In all the years we've lived here, we've never seen fire," said Shelby Haro, who stood with her family on the street watching as flames turned to white smoke. She and her daughter had also called 911.

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No official cause was immediately announced, but preliminary reports indicated power lines might have come down before or during the fire. Narrow streets and a long driveway to the home may have hindered access for firefighters.

"We had 3 helicopters in the air and ground personnel galore," explained LAFD Spokesman Brian Humphrey of the response. He warned that brush at this time of year is volatile and to expect more fires as the Summer approaches.