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UPDATED: San Francisco Lt. Vincent Perez killed in house fire. FF Anthony Valerio is 'fighting for his life'. Reported flashover. Listen to fireground audio.

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UPDATE: Hospital and fire officials have told reporters the firefighter killed is Lt. Vincent Perez. Perez was 48-years-old. The firefighter critically burned is 53-year-old Anthony Valerio.

From SFGate.com:

Perez was a San Francisco firefighter for 25 years. He was born and raised in the Mission District and Bernal Heights, and was known for his courage and sense of humor, firefighters union president Tom O'Connor said.

"He was always the first guy in a fire and the last guy out," O'Connor said. "He lightened up the mood at the firehouse … He was a firefighter's firefighter."

Earlier

Speaking at San Francisco General Hospital, Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White told reporters (see raw video below) that one firefighter has died and another is fighting for his life following a fire reported at 10:44 AM at 133 Berkeley Way. A third injured firefighter is reported in fair condition.

From KGO-TV:

The blaze started on the first floor of the home and spread to at least the second story, (Spokeswoman Mindy) Talmadge said.

Talmadge said firefighters saw a flash while inside the home. Around that time, a firefighter in the home activated an emergency alarm. Dispatch got the alert and notified the incident commander, who tried to reach the firefighter by radio but was unable to, Talmadge said.

Additional crew members were sent in, and they found two firefighters down and "pretty badly burned," Talmadge said.

The third injured firefighter was able to exit the home without help, she said.

From SFGate.com:

The firefighters were hurt during a "flashover," when everything in a room ignites at once because of a sudden influx of oxygen, Talmadge said.

All three injured firefighters were found together. The two most badly hurt were unconscious, and the third was able to walk out on his own, Talmadge said.

The house appears to be two stories from the street, but has two additional stories built into the slope of a hill in the back.

Talmadge said such structures "historically have caused us problems." Firefighters rushing into such buildings often do not realize that they're on the ground floor and or grasp the layout, she said.

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  • mark

    God bless San Fran and the families involved. My heart and prayers go out to them.
     
    As an aside, is there any chance they could hire a spokesperson that has a clue regarding fire behavior? Flashovers do not occur because of a sudden influx of oxygen. That would be a backdraft. I realize she may have been stressed out, but this is her job.

    • Anonymous

      Really, give the spokesperson a break, they lost a member of their family.

    • Paul

      @Mark, Flashover is infact caused by an influx of oxygen, its  called ventilation.

  • ukfbbuff

      Tragic day in San Francisco
     My thoughts and prayers go out to the friends, family and co-workers of the Injured and LODD Firefighter.

  • Ben

    I think the SFFD spokesperson aka PIO stated that the fire intensity could have been affected by a "sudden influx of oxygen". This is absolulty true in the case of a flashover. Flashovers can be accelerated by uncontrolled, uncoordinated, and uncommunicated ventilation. If a roof, window, fan,or natural ventilation opening is allowed into the fire compartment it can rapidly progress to a fast growing, fully developed fire also known as "flashover". Let's not be so critical of the PIO during these difficult times. God bless SFFD, this is a tragedy for all Bay Area Firefighters.

  • Just Sayin

    Thoughts and prayers to all from Local 36

  • http://fire.gov sad

    Flashovers can in fact be the result of oxygen being entrained in to a room filled with hot smoke (fuel).  The ventilation induced flashover reaction is slower and not as energetic as a backdraft but as you see from this incident, it can certainly be deadly. 
    What a sad day. 

  • Pingback: San Francisco Firefighter Dies After Flashover: LODD Video, Audio, and Links | The Fire Critic

  • Pingback: LODD – San Francisco | Firegeezer

  • Troubled

    Mark, go back and study your Basic Fire Manual.
    That audio was gut wrenching. I would change the policy of waiting 5 minutes from the time the MAyday butoon was pushed until command was notified. If someone in the radio room was monitoring the fireground ops channel, they should have put 1 and 1 together when they recieved a mayday button activation and the incident commander was calling that unit repeatedly without a response…communications should have immdeiately notified command of the activation.
    I have said my prayers to the SFFD and all its family. Sad Day, sad day indeed.

    • SFFD

      To Troubled.

      The engine company that activated the emergency button was not at the scene yet. It just happened at the same time therefore the audio seems confusing. The commanders did everything right. Sad day, please pray for Tony who is fighting the battle of his life.

  • Bull

    You can't learn everything about fire emergencies from the movie "Back Draft"

  • mark

    Guess I will have to. I've been wrong before.
     
    Always been taught that flashovers are the results of temperature while backdrafts are the result of oxygen being introduced.
     
    Thanks for the correction

    • dave statter

      Mark,

      Consider this official notification that you have violated the rules and guiding principles for commenting on Internet forums. It is never okay to post a comment where you admit you are wrong. The proper response is to attack the person correcting you by mentioning in a rude manner their heritage, their inferior status in life and when all else fails, their spelling or grammar. Specifically when posting on this forum it is also acceptable to point out that the writer is not a real firefighter, is a yard breather and that your hose is bigger than their hose.

      Please review these important rules and regulations before submitting your next comment.

      If there are no further infractions over the next 12 months this notice will then be removed from your file. If there is another violation of the rules prior to that time we will be forced to send someone to your home to confiscate your computer.

      Sincerely,

      The Management.

      • mark

        Well, in that case……………………………….
         
        Oops, almost apologized again, good thing I caught myself.

  • ukfbbuff

      Dave
      Thanks for your coverage of the "Berkeley Way Incident"
         I think Mark has learned from your letter.
       The address for San Francisco FD Engine 26 is:
            80 Digby Street
            San Francisco, Calif. 94131
           
     

  • Fire Captain

    Keep the family, The Dept & everyone involved in your thoughts & prayers. Sad & tragic, again the ultimate sacrifice is made. Thanks Dave for your usual timely information.

  • Anonymous

    god bless them