California Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency Saturday after a massive fire erupted at a storage yard, shutting down one of the busiest freeways in downtown Los Angeles.
The blaze was first reported in the early morning around 12:30 a.m. at a pallet yard underneath the I-10 Freeway near East 14th and Alameda streets, officials said.
It eventually spread to eight acres before it was extinguished.
Shocking video footage from KABC shows immense flames shooting into the sky, consuming a highway overpass.
The inferno sent homeless people living beneath the road scrambling and destroyed an LAFD fire engine and several civilian vehicles, according to the outlet.
No injuries have been reported, according to LAFD.
“The state is mobilizing resources and taking steps to ensure any necessary repairs are completed as soon as possible to minimize the impact on those traveling in and around Los Angeles,” Newsom said in a statement.
“The state will assess damage, remove hazardous waste and begin repairs as soon as the site can be accessed,” he added. “Caltrans and the California Highway Patrol will continue to provide updates as they become available.”
The first storage yard to catch fire was a 40,000-square-foot property, according to LAFD. The flames then spread to a neighboring storage yard of similar size between Lawrence and Elwood streets.
By 2:30 a.m., pallets in both yards were mostly ablaze, and firefighters used bulldozers to move debris and put out hot spots, according to the local station.
“Firefighters have successfully defended three exposed commercial buildings from fire extension,” the LAFD said in a statement
#BREAKING Both directions of the 10 Freeway near Alameda in Downtown Los Angeles are shutdown following a massive pallet fire. @LAFD on scene. CALTRANS is determining if the structural integrity of the freeway has been compromised.
— Marc Cota-Robles (@abc7marccr) November 11, 2023
In the morning, the stretch of highway was charred, with guardrails contorted from the heat.
Caltrans said the highway would be closed for at least 24 hours as they assess the extent of the damage.
“If it’s just the concrete that’s what we call spalled — chipped off — there might be an opportunity just to go in and do some cosmetic fixes,” Caltrans spokeswoman Lauren Wonder told KABC. “If it’s gone down to the rebar and there’s some concern about the structural integrity of the bridge, we would need to keep any traffic load off of the structure and then that would be more extensive repairs.”