Local Briefs: Apartment Fire Displaces 12 Tenants--Airport Provides Firefighting Support

City Attorney Chases Motor Scooters


December 8, 2017

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Apartment building at 300 Ashland Avenue

Twelve residents were displaced after a fire erupted early Thursday morning November 30, at a three-story apartment building in Ocean Park, SMFD officials said.

The blaze was reported at 2:05 a.m. after a man smelled smoke at a residential structure in the 300 block of Ashland Avenue, according to the Santa Monica Fire Department.

Firefighters responded to the scene, where intense flames burned through two floors and multiple rooms. The fire was extinguished about 35 minutes after it was first reported.

Investigators determined it began in a third-floor patio area at the location. No one was injured.

City Attorney Chases Motor Scooters

SM City Attorney's Office has filed a criminal complaint against Bird Rides, Inc. which offers motorized scooters for rent in Santa Monica, said a City press release.

The SMCA says Bird has "repeatedly violated local laws by operating without a business license. Bird scooters are often found in the public right of way, including on sidewalks. The company has repeatedly refused to comply with City citations."

The City Attorney says it investigated the case after receiving complaints from the public.

Deputy City Attorney Eda Suh filed criminal charges against Bird on December 6, 2017.  On the same day, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Tamara Hall, finding reasonable ground to believe that Bird had committed the offenses charged in the compliant, issued a summons to Bird requiring it to appear in court to answer the charges on February 1, 2018.

Airport Provides Fire Fighting Support

An airport pilots association says it provided critical support to aircraft fighting, reporting on and responding to the Skirball Fire.  

Aircraft using SMO airspace included water-dropping helicopters, Los Angeles Police Department Helicopters and newsgathering aircraft.

Despite Santa Monica City Council efforts to close 100 year-old Santa Monica Municipal Airport, the airport and it's FAA-staffed Control Tower continue to provide critical air traffic services for fighting hazards of all kinds," said the association in a press release. "Surprisingly, SMO is designated as "Critical Infrastructure" by the City's own"All Hazards MitigationPlan"

Santa Monica Airport Association is a party to a lawsuit seeking to overturn a deal between FAA and City of Santa Monica from February 2017, entitled a "Consent Decree" to shorten the SMO single runway to 3,500 feet in 2017 and close the airport at the end of 2028.

"Loss of SMO as an airport, and the City's stated "creative reuse" of its structures, will additionally greatly exacerbate population density and traffic congestion within the City limits and in neighboring communities," said the Association in its press release.


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