LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A Los Angeles Fire Department firefighter has died after falling from an aerial ladder during a weekend training exercise, authorities said Monday.
The incident unfolded Saturday just before 9:45 a.m. at the Barclay Hotel in the 300 block of South Main Street, according to an LAFD spokesperson.
Officials say Wong, 29, fell while participating in a training exercise in downtown L.A. He was transported in critical condition to a local trauma center, where he succumbed to his injuries Monday morning.
The fire department is still working to determine exactly how far Wong fell. They say he landed on the top of the truck and was immediately treated by fellow firefighters on the scene before being taken to the hospital.
“I join the men and women of the LAFD in mourning Firefighter Wong’s sudden passing,” said LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas. “It is always a tragedy to lose one of our own, especially an accomplished individual who was still at the beginning of what was certainly going to be a promising career.”
Ulises Melgar was working across the street at the time.
“We were opening the shop when all of a sudden you just hear a big bang,” Melgar said. “There was a firefighter laying on top of the truck so it appears he fell down during the training.”
Melgar told CBS2 it’s fairly common to see ladder trucks in downtown Los Angeles, where firefighters often train in and around the high-rise buildings on the weekends due to light traffic.