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RPV Apartment Fire Deemed Accidental

The Los Angeles County Fire Department reports at least one apartment on Armaga Spring Road was "gutted" in Wednesday night's blaze.

Editor's note: This article was originally published Aug. 22 at 8:17 p.m. It has been updated multiple times since then.

An apartment fire in the 5900 block of Armaga Spring Road in Rancho Palos Verdes on Wednesday night was determined to be accidental and caused by an electrical issue, according to a Los Angeles County Fire Department official.

No injuries were reported. At least one apartment was gutted, another was heavily damaged and two others may have had smoke damage, according to LACFD Inspector Quvondo Johnson.

The fire—the cause of which was not immediately known—displaced about 10 people, Johnson said. Power to the four-unit building was shut off while firefighters were battling the blaze.

Nearby Highridge Road and Ayde Lane were closed to all traffic for at least two hours.

LACFD received a call about the fire at 6:23 p.m. A second alarm was called at 6:33 p.m., and the fire was declared "knocked down"—nothing was actively burning—by 7:19 p.m.

After that, fire crews worked to ensure the fire was completely out; personnel were on scene "well past midnight," Johnson said.

"We'll leave somebody as a fire watch to make sure that no one else goes in and … to make sure we got all the fire (out)," Johnson explained to Patch on Thursday.

Eight LACFD trucks, including four ladder trucks and paramedics responded.

Capt. Mark Savage told City News Service that about 75 firefighters were at the scene. 

An agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Explosives and Firearms was interviewing witnesses at the scene; Johnson said ATF agents often train with LACFD arson investigators.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department assisted with the road closures.

Neighborhood resident Chris, who declined to provide his last name, said he was going to a board meeting for his homeowners association at about 6:45 p.m. when he saw smoke coming out of a vent in the building's attic.

"I saw smoke coming out of the roof ... but it didn't look right, and then I saw it was an actual fire," he said.

The cost of the damage was still being tallied as of Wednesday night, Savage said.

—City News Service contributed to this report.

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