LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The Board of Supervisors declared a local emergency Tuesday in the wake of last week’s explosive fire at a Maywood warehouse, saying hazardous levels of magnesium were found in the fire ash.
Supervisor Hilda Solis recommended the declaration and also proposed reaching out to Gov. Jerry Brown to ask that he declare a state emergency. Both motions were unanimously approved.READ MORE: Help Needed To Find Gunman Whose Shot Killed Diego Ortega-Reza In East LA
“Over 300 residents were impacted,” Solis said. “Many were not able to go back to their homes” because of magnesium levels.
It took three days for the blaze, which broke out June 14, to be fully extinguished.
Families who live on the south side of 52nd Street were cleared to go back into their homes last Wednesday night, but those who live on the other side of the street – closer to the fire – were sheltered at the local YMCA, which does not have air conditioning. When temperatures reached triple digits this weekend, county officials helped residents move into area hotels.READ MORE: Deputy-Involved Shooting Reported In East LA
The emergency declarations were made to help free up funding for food, shelter and other assistance for the displaced families.
The three-alarm fire — reported at 2:30 a.m. June 14 – gutted a warehouse serving Gemini Plastic Enterprises and a metal-recycling plant in the 3500 block of Fruitland Avenue, sparking a series of strong explosions and sending a thick plume of noxious smoke over the region.
In addition to magnesium, other metals such as coppers, zinc and lead were present at the metal-recycling plant, along with chemicals and propane, according to County Fire Chief Daryl Osby.MORE NEWS: 101 Freeway In Boyle Heights To Be Shut Down This Weekend For More Sixth Street Bridge Work
(©2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)