EBT: Oakland fire: Crews hopeful that death toll won’t rise, building 85 percent searched
OAKLAND — The meticulous search for bodies in the rubble of a devastating Fruitvale District warehouse fire neared its final stages Tuesday morning, and officials were hopeful that the current death toll of 36 would not rise.
Crews completed about 85 percent of their search by 6 a.m., and authorities said they’d begin combing through final bits of debris after stabilizing a front corner of the building also known as the “Ghost Ship”. Officials suspended the search around 10:30 p.m. Monday to address that concern, then resumed their search around 2 a.m.
“There are two pockets that remain (not) searched,” Oakland Fire Battalion Chief Robert Lipp said. One of them will be processed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Lipp was optimistic no more victims would be found by searchers.
“I don’t anticipate (the number) going up,” he said. “One area has potential but otherwise no.
We’re hoping we don’t find any more bodies.”
The death toll from the state’s deadliest structure fire since 1906 remained at 36. Authorities have identified 26 of the victims and tentatively identified nine of them. One victim remains unidentified.
KOMO: Energy efficient while saving lives: Seattle launches hybrid ambulances
SEATTLE - When fire fighter paramedics Morlon Malveaux and Mark Pedeferri learned that their powerhorse diesel ambulance was going to be traded for a gas-powered hybrid they were more than a little concerned.The two, who run a Medic One rig stationed at Harborview Medical Center, questioned power, performance and how the new ambulance would climb big hills.
But, after nearly nine months on the road with the new vehicle, neither have any complaints.
“It’s much quieter, I think the handling is a little better as well, but a much quieter rig for us on the inside of the cab,” Malveaux said.
The Seattle Fire Department’s vehicle change out is part of the city’s Drive Clean initiative, which calls for adding cleaner fuels and electric cars to the city’s entire fleet.
Lt. Harold Webb, fire department spokesman, said response times haven’t seen a change by adding hybrid converters to Malveaux and Pedeferri’s ambulance as well as another Medic One unit.
XL Hybrids, the company that is outfitting the Ford E-450 ambulance fleet, said in a news release that in the night months the department has seen “a 19 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions.”
Webb said the department plans to add three more hybrid converters to gas-powered ambulances in the coming months.
The two ambulances don’t look any different than the others in the fleet. In fact, the only difference can be seen underneath the rig, fire fighter paramedics said.
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