County Backs Safety Recommendations For I-5 Tunnel
Supervisor Antonovich believes in Fire Department's ideas to improve safety in I-5 tunnel
In an effort to prevent future tragedies similar to the October 12 truck wreck and fire, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich’s motion to urge the California Department of Transportation to implement safety recommendations by the Los Angeles County Fire Department as the tunnel is being repaired.
County fire fighters reported several challenges to fighting the Interstate 5 tunnel fire including limited access caused by the length of the tunnel, the lack of an adequate water source, and the volume of smoke and gas particulates generated by the fire.
“Following the superb response and rescue effort on October 12, the Los Angeles County Fire Department has recommended these vital safety measures to assist first responders prevent future tragedies,” said Antonovich.
Recommendations to address these issues include:
A mechanical ventilation system utilizing large exhaust fans similar to technology incorporated into the construction of the two tunnels connecting the 105 and 405 freeways in the cities of Hawthorne and Los Angeles or a passive vertical ventilation system halfway through the tunnel.
A water supply and appliances near the entrance and exit of the tunnel for firefighting purposes.
A zoned manually operated water or foam system installed throughout the length of the tunnel.
An emergency lighting system.
A traffic control system to stop traffic from entering the tunnel when the fire alarm is activated.