Independent Breaking News :  Los Angeles  –  Orange County

In the darkness, as you lie dreaming, our news team stands watch, keeping Los Angeles/ Orange County informed while the first responders' heroics save the day - and night. Again and again. And again. A sudden deafening blast, glass exploding, surreal silence. Then frantic screaming: ARE YOU ALRIGHT?! Tearful terror. Then sirens, flashing lights, the sound of boots running. Strong steady emergency responders’ hands reach out, "We're here to help. Don't be afraid." A quick assessment, then suddenly reassurance, encouragement – like a burst of altered reality straight out of a Superman story: the firefighters’ sudden arrival with lifesaving skills and a junior firefighter hat – and even one for Daddy too. That tender kindness of a little red hat ignites a fearful child's lightning bolt sense of renewed safety in the midst of a sea of otherwise unmanageable horror. And in the surging commotion all around, the fear is beaten back - one little heart at a time With an eye to the details and perceptions attuned to the heart of the matter, we reach out on every news incident we cover – watching in amazement as the world tips back from disaster to a restored state that we recognize again – with perpetually refreshed appreciation for our heroic public servants who run to save lives as though it’s routine. But it’s never routine: it is always EXTRAORDINARY – each and every time. And we are honored to keep you informed. /// NEWS: We stand watch - and report back - so you don't have to. ///

07.19.18 9:00 AM 

14355 Arminta St

Panarama City, CA 

/// In unrelenting heat at Valley Recruit Training Academy 81 in Panorama, CA, the 48 members of Recruit Class 17-3 became the latest graduates to join the Los Angeles Fire Department, on July 19, 2018. Helicopter flyovers marked the celebratory occasion./// /// Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti warmly welcomed the latest crop of LAFD recruits – 4 women and 44 men - at a jubilant graduation gathering of congratulatory friends and family members. He paid special tribute to the families and friends whose influence had helped forge the exemplary character of each graduate. /// /// Garcetti also thanked the graduates on behalf of the 4 million Los Angeles residents whose safety they will impact. And he thanked the class as a whole; he urged them to stay in touch with each other, noting that as a group they had been exceptional, adding, "We are proud of each of these individuals; they reflect our heart, our spirit, our soul. …Be strong, be brave, be fearless, be humble…with sweat, determination, and hard work.” /// /// A diverse group of high school students are recruited and educated by the Youth Fire Academy regarding careers in fire service. “For the first time ever we had two LAFD Youth Fire Academy graduates with us here today as well,” Los Angeles Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas said. “That's a big deal. Congratulations on that. ...We have much to celebrate - much to be proud about." /// /// The graduates' training will continue in their fire station-based training during the next year, alongside seasoned firefighter and paramedic veterans. Terrazas quoted Ray Leblond, “You learn something every day if you pay attention,” adding, “The safety of the people we protect, your personal firefighters, your personal safety depends on [paying attention]." Terrazas concluded with a reminder that the firefighting team will become each member's second family, worthy of respect, looking out for one another. /// /// A genuinely awe-inspiring demonstration of the new graduates' professional skills - some of which is respectfully highlighted in our video footage shown here - honestly impressed all present. CONGRATULATIONS, Graduates! Be bold! Be courageous and strong! STAY SAFE! ///

07.11.18 3:58 AM 

1st St & Fairview

Santa Ana, CA

/// A Santa Ana man, David Brihn, 41, was arrested after a downright astonishing series of events that ultimately involved two incidents of hit-and-run allegations, four people seriously injured, four vehicles utterly demolished, a subsequent alleged kidnapping, a scuffle with police use of a taser to subdue a suspect - all of which finally wound up in an arrest early Wednesday, July 11. /// /// The final crash occurred at about 4 AM at N. Fairview St. & W.1st St. in Santa Ana, and - in total - involved four vehicles and a bicycle as the bizarre sequence of events evolved. /// /// The driver of a black Nissan Cube, Brihn, is alleged to have committed an initial hit &run violation that was witnessed by the driver & passenger of a white Honda sedan; Brihn - apparently in a fit of Road Rage - subsequently began chasing the witnesses who were fleeing in the Honda. Both drivers - the pursuer and the pursued - ran a red light during that chase sequence; at that 1st & Fairview stoplight intersection they both collided with the driver of a white GMC pickup truck that had been lawfully crossing, and the impact violently flipped the truck over 50 feet beyond the crash site. /// /// The force of the collisions threw the pursuing white Honda sedan flying through the air where it ultimately struck a bystander who was waiting with his bicycle, beside the stoplight. The cyclist was severely injured after being hit by the Honda which then threw him violently into a street sign. All of the vehicles at the scene - two cars, a truck and a bicycle - were utterly demolished. The four trauma patients - the cyclist, the Honda driver & passenger, and the pickup truck driver - were all transported to medical centers where they were all reported by the Orange County Fire Authority to be in critical but stable condition by late Wednesday afternoon. /// /// Brihn - the injured Nissan driver - fled the scene of his alleged second hit-and-run incident of the night; he entered a nearby Mel-O'-Dee ice cream business where he purportedly kidnapped a worker, self-identified as Ignacio. Reportedly, Brihn hit Ignatio on the head and then forcibly dragged him to the Santa Ana investigating police officers at the nearby Fairview & 1st St. crash scene. It's alleged that Brihn deliberately falsely identified Ignatio as the Nissan driver who had run the red light and collided with the truck and the sedan at the intersection. /// /// Police investigators observed that the accuser's version of events did not account for his own injured and bloodied appearance. The investigators' queries met with resistance which eventually led to the added use of a taser in subduing the accuser (who was himself the alleged driver of the black Nissan Cube), Santa Ana resident David Brihn. Authorities arrested Brihn on suspicion of felony DUI/ hit-and-run, with the possibility of additional assault and kidnapping charges. Circumstances of these incidents remained under investigation through the evening of 7.11.2018.

7.03.2018 /// Long Beach, CA Convention Center

Long Beach, CA

When Captain Dave Rosa's life was stolen by a shooter on June 25th, during what had seemed should be a routine fire call, we were faced with the excruciating challenge of how to best honor this dearly departed man. Now we are called to effectively pick up his baton and carry it forward, investing our best efforts in tribute to the treasure of his life that he lived among us. Our hearts truly go out in love and grief and encouragement to Captain Rosa's wife Lynley & sons, Alec, 25, & Sam, 15; to his extended family & friends, to his legion of fellow emergency responders who turned out in droves from coast to coast & Canada - paying public tribute to their fallen brother in waves that reverberated in newsfeeds literally around the globe, and to his community and all who knew him - or knew of him - and loved him. The message is clear: today our world has one less truly great man in our midst. And it hurts. WE hurt. And we wonder how to go on. With a man like Dave (he wouldn't tolerate too many of the "Captain Rosa" formalities), it's time for each of us to step into our grown-up pants and stand straight, fully attentive, willing to do our own duty now, in tribute to carrying onward the treasury of human value that he always embodied. What is the legacy Dave has entrusted to us to uphold in his absence? Amongst the hundreds of memories repeated in the past few days, one of those most prevalent was, simply, "He was full of joy." And he was secure in his genuine humility and his faith in God; in his quiet strength he knew who he was. And funny. And kind. Authentically GOOD to the bone. So ssso many many fine things that we took for granted, that we sincerely cherished about Dave. His loved ones repeatedly said that he lived life with intention, that he lived life to the fullest every day, making lasting memories with whomever he encountered. A devoted family man of enduring faith, an enthused Little League coach, a spirited barbequer, an all-in firefighter and beloved humorous husband, dad, son, brother, friend. Not a guy up on some impossible pedestal, but a guy whose heroic empathetic humanity never lost its way. Dave Rosa's memory calls out the best in us now: to be genuinely kind. Thoughtful. Decent, even when we'd rather be spiteful. Strong, knowing that the world's weakness perpetually calls out to each of us - entreating us to share our strength, to snatch victory from growling defeat - whether with a surging firehose, an encouraging smile, an outstretched hand, a bracing hug, a warm blanket, a cool drink, a playful cuff on the shoulder, an unexpected laugh, unashamed tears. There just won't ever be a time when we won't miss him anymore. But we can learn to carry him in our hearts, learn to be grateful for the time we shared with him, and learn to behave in ways about which he would approve, going forward. And we don't have to say goodbye - not to a guy like Dave. We all just wipe the tears and take deep breaths, keep putting one foot ahead of another, recall the things we cherished about him and smile with loving appreciation, be grateful for the duty we can still offer in service of making this nation and our world a better place - one simple genuinely caring act at a time. Forgive one another's faults. Forgive our imperfect selves. Be decent to utter strangers. Speak civilly of others - especially those who aggravate us. Aim higher. Do better. Make him proud of us, carrying on lives of integrity in his living loving memory. "Until we meet again, Brother." Rest in peace, Dave Rosa, alive in our intentionally healing hearts.

06.11.18 4:49 PM 

NB Tollway 241 @ Santiago Canyon Rd

Irvine, CA

UPDATE: Wednesday, 6.13.18 2:30 PM ... The Santiago Fire [off Hwy 241 & Santiago Canyon Road, Orange County] is now 80% contained (still at 155 acres) with no further forward motion. 286 personnel from OCFA, Cal Fire, and U.S. Forest Service remain fully committed to fighting this fire to full containment, on the ground and from the air. As our video highlights, aerial strategies have been particularly valuable in this rural area fire, typically in preceding ground forces and in tackling rough terrain. Especially noticeable is the large unique-looking Sikorsky Skycrane (with its forward pilot compartment clearly separate from the large rear water tank portion - altogether looking sometimes like an airborne sci-fi grasshopper), typically ferrying 1,000 gallons of water in one trip. They load relatively quickly and fairly easily via a descending snorkel - accessing area ponds, Irvine Lake, and hydrants as primary water sources for tackling this fire. The smaller "Type 3" (bucket) helicopters - typically hauling around 80 gallons per load - are considered too dangerous for use in populated areas, where structures can snag the unique descended bucket feature, causing the helicopters to crash too easily to be a mainstay for firefighting use there. But they too have performed valiantly, to help beat the Santiago Fire nearly into submission at this hour. No surfactants have been added to the water dropped on this fire. OCFA PIO confirmed that the cause of this fire still remains under investigation as of this afternoon. UPDATE: Tuesday, 6.12.18 8 PM ... “Firefighters [back up to a force of 300 on Tuesday] continued to build and improve containment lines," the OCFA stated; "the public is urged to stay vigilant to any change in fire conditions." The status of the fire was at 60 % containment with no further acreage involved, thanks to the diligent day & night efforts of the ground and aerial crews. The Santiago Fire has burned 155 acres, and was 30% contained by 7 AM Tuesday morning, 6.12.18, with 200 firefighters still actively committed "mopping up hot spots" on site, according to OCFA PIO. All roads are open, there is no reported damage to homes, and one firefighter sustained minor injuries/ 6.11.18 4:50 P.M. NB Tollway 241 @ Santiago Canyon Rd Irvine, CA NEWS A quick moving brush fire had burned over 100 acres of Santiago Canyon Monday evening, prompting the Orange County Fire Authority to close all of the northbound lanes of Tollway 241 in Irvine, near Freeway 133, at 5:30 p.m. OCFA Captain Tony Bommarito reported closure of Santiago Canyon Road in both directions near the tollway, to prevent the fire from jumping the road. OCFA was reporting ground crews of 300 firefighters, with aerial crews of 8 helicopters and 6 air tankers making progress as wind became less of a factor later in the day. No structures have been threatened, and no evacuation orders have been ordered at this time.

06.02.18 5:27 PM 

1 University Drive

Aliso Viejo/Laguna Beach CA

06.02.18 5:27 PM 1 University Drive Aliso Viejo, CA News * FINAL UPDATE 06.03.18 | -9 PM- Laguna Beach, CA News -- "Aliso Fire" UPDATE -06.03.18- The Orange County Fire Authority and the Laguna Beach Police Department are reporting that Wood Canyon fires are 40% contained as of 9 PM Sunday evening, with all mandatory evacuation orders now expired. Orange County brush fires remain active within the original 150 acres of the weekend's fires. Fire crews from the Laguna Beach Fire Department and the OCFA continue to closely monitor the fire situation and remain on scene, actively fighting fires and destroying hotspots. There will be no classes at the Top of the World Elementary School on Monday, 6.04.18; no other school cancellations are known at this time. By mid-afternoon, LBFD and OCFA were battling blazes in Aliso and Wood Canyon Park, assisted by aerial tanker water drop support. According to a statement posted on Facebook by Senator Pat Bates, "Fire investigators are asking for the public's assistance if they have any information to help identify the cause of the fire. Please call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) if you have any information that will assist our fire investigators." As Facebook and Twitter recounted throughout this past weekend, thousands of men, women, children, hamsters, dogs, bunnies and cats (and several frogs and a turtle) are profoundly grateful to be resting -safe and secure - in their unburned homes tonight. ***To all the many hundreds of selfless public servants & volunteers - from firefighters to law enforcement personnel to big rig drivers bringing & wielding trench plows; from aerial pilots to workers in evacuation shelters to medics and cooks and counselors and trash removers; from information officers to traffic directors to map makers to news disseminators and every single other duty, large & small, performed in aid of saving lives & lands & property & hearts & often sanity - THANK YOU!! Each every one of you is well and truly loved and appreciated. *** 06.03.18 | -10 AM- Laguna Beach, CA News -- "Aliso Fire" UPDATE -06.03.18- 10% containment of the Wood Canyon fires is being reported by OCFA PIO, with Orange County brush fires still active within 150 acres. Fire crews from the Laguna Beach Fire Department and the OCFA are closely monitoring the fire situation and remain on scene," Laguna Beach PD contact Jordan Villwock reported. --Only two injuries have been reported since the fires erupted yesterday afternoon, and the astonishing near-superhuman efforts of the firefighters and all contributing response teams have resulted in no structure losses thus far - a wonderful and amazing accomplishment. __________________________ 06.03.18 | -8 AM- Laguna Beach, CA News -- "Aliso Fire" UPDATE -06.03.18- By 8 AM Sunday the Orange County Fire Authority Public Information Officer stated that aerial resources - and at times over 400 firefighters - are still battling to contain brush fires aggravated by fierce winds that have spread fire over 150 acres in Wood Canyon, with zero containment. Evacuation orders mandated yesterday for Aliso Viejo areas have been cancelled, while evacuation remained in effect Sunday morning for approximately 700 Laguna Beach homes in the Old Top of the World Drive. --The City of Laguna Beach verified that areas west of Alta Laguna Boulevard are now open for residents' return; however, the east side of Alta Laguna Blvd. remains closed. A Laguna Beach Police Department press release confirms thatevacuations remain in effect for Alpine Way, Ann’s Lane, Bonn Drive, Crestwood Circle, Mountain View Drive, Nestall Road, Old Top of the World Drive, ​ Park Place, Ridge Drive, Rimcrest Circle, Shady Lane, Shady Place, Sommet Du Monde, Treetop Lane, and Tyrol Drive. The press release explained: "Evacuations remain in effect for these areas due to the potential of fire danger and because fire apparatus might be populating the neighborhoods, preventing the ability to evacuate. --Aerial fire crews are currently monitoring flare-ups and heat spots on the fire [verified] from the air. Because a thick underbrush is currently smoldering in some areas, ground fire crews need to extinguish those areas from the ground and maintain access to the area. -- The City wants to sincerely thank all residents affected by the evacuation for their cooperation during this fire emergency. No structures have been lost at this time. The evacuation orders remain in effect to safeguard our citizens from any harm and will be lifted as soon as possible." --Laguna beach authorities said that the Susi Q Center at 380 Third Street was designated as an evacuation shelter for both residents and animals. ***Emergency Alert and Warning: It is critical that people in Laguna Beach register to receive emergency alerts. Sign up at and Nixle by texting 92651 to 888-777. ___________________________ Ferocious wind-driven vegetation fires raged over more than 120 acres in Orange County on Saturday, 6.02.18. OCFA Captain Tony Bommarito reported that some of the canyon fires burned thick areas of dry century-old brush, adding to the fury of the tenacious wind-buffeted blaze. OCFA teams pulled hose lines through residents' lawns, fighting to stop flames from destroying homes. Shifting winds required firefighters to stop and reconfigure coordination of new strategies repeatedly. Thousands of residents were evacuated from the Aliso Viejo area: Wood Canyon and Pacific Park to Wood Canyon and Laurel. The mandatory evacuation resulted in an American Red Cross shelter opening hastily at the Aliso Niguel High School (28000 Wolverine Way); over 2,100 area families were temporarily displaced as a safety precaution. The Laguna Beach area fire evacuations included evacuating 1500 residents from the Old Top of the World neighborhoods, and behind Soka University of America, according to OCFA PIO, with evacuations directed to Alta Laguna Park. Unified Command (Orange County Fire Authority, Orange County Sheriff's Department, Orange County Parks, and Cal Fire) reported up to 400 firefighters battled the blaze on the ground, aided by four helicopters and six fixed-wing air tankers delivering water and fire retardant. The helicopters are expected to continue making water drops throughout the night, while fire strike teams are expected to remain on the scene throughout Sunday, June 3. OCFA reported one minor firefighter injury. Sargent Jim Cota, Laguna Beach Police Dept., reported that the Laguna Beach Animal Shelter was also emptied as a precautionary measure.

04.12.18  10:55 PM    

NB I-5 @ Alicia Pkwy

Mission Viejo, CA

Will Ferrell, legendary comedian/actor, was "unhurt" following a two-car crash in which he was involved, Thursday night, April 12, 2018, on Santa Ana Freeway 5 (I-5), in Mission Viejo, California. Ferrell, 50, was taken by ambulance to a nearby Orange County hospital where doctors confirmed that he had sustained no injuries in the incident. The collision occurred when the 22-year-old driver of a Toyota Highlander fell asleep at the wheel, sideswiping the right rear panel of the chauffeur-driven Lincoln SUV in which Ferrell was a passenger, and causing it to lose control; the SUV then collided with a center highway divider, after which it flipped over. Ferrell was returning from San Diego where he had appeared earlier that evening, taping a comedic "Funny Or Die" event at the Oceanside High School Performing Arts Center, as part of a nonpartisan "Glam Up the Midterms" voter registration campaign, aimed at encouraging young voters to participate in the national November 2018 midterm elections. According to California Highway Patrol Sergeant Richard Peacock, the driver of the Toyota was not hurt and was neither ticketed nor detained. CHP Officer Rafael Reynoso stated that neither drugs nor alcohol appeared to have been a factor in the crash. Of the four people in the SUV, the 3 - including Ferrell - who were wearing seat belts were all relatively unharmed. A CHP officer said that major injuries were sustained by a young woman passenger who was not wearing a seat belt in the SUV.

06.03.18 4:59 AM 

Bake Pkwy & Lake Forest Drive

Irvine, CA

05.27.18 4:58 PM 

W Central Ave & S Bristol St

Santa Ana, CA

05.15.18  1:34 PM    

11 Mareblu

Aliso Viejo, CA

05.15.18 | 1:34PM 11 Mareblu Aliso Viejo, CA News A deadly explosion in an Aliso Viejo medical/dental arts center at 11 Mareblu killed one and injured three early Tuesday afternoon as authorities hurried to contain the scene and secure the surrounding area while also attempting to determine the cause of the blast. A preschool - Academy on the Hills - was among the nearby buildings evacuated as a safety precaution. Early speculation by responding agencies arose from contradictory location reports which included a suspected gas explosion, a construction work incident inside the building, and an alleged vehicular crash at 5 Mareblu. Reports of an earlier bomb threat could not be verified by press time. The Orange County Sheriff's Dept. tweeted that Oso Parkway, Moulton Parkway, and La Paz Road were closed to facilitate the investigations, with an appeal for spectators to avoid the area. This is an active scene; updates will be forthcoming. 05.15.18 | 8:00 PM - UPDATE News Investigations continue as multiple agencies comb through the wreckage of this afternoon's explosion inside the ground floor of a 11 Mareblu medical/dental building in Aliso Viejo, CA. The blast killed one woman who was inside the building and injured three who were nearby her, also blowing out exterior windows and sending debris flying into the lawn and parking areas outside of the building. Personnel from the Orange County Fire Authority, bomb squad & hazmat (hazardous materials) team; Orange County Sheriff's Crime Investigation Department; FBI; Homeland Security; the AFT (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives); S.W.A.T. and others all assisted to help determine the cause of the blast. 05.16.18 | 6:00 PM - UPDATE: News The victim of yesterday's fatal fire and explosion in Aliso Viejo has been officially identified as 48-year-old Hungarian-born Ildiko Krajnyak, a resident of Trabuco Canyon, according to Orange County Undersheriff Don Barnes. She was a licensed aesthetician and co-owner/operator of the day spa known as Magyar Kozmetika, the site of yesterday's violent suspected crime scene at 11 Mareblu. According to her web site, Krajnyak's business specialized in "skin care, eyelash service, waxing", microdermabrasion, etc. Shortly after 1 PM yesterday the explosion tore through the medical & dental arts office building where Magyar Kozmetica was located on the ground floor; the blast resulted in Krajnyak's death and injuries to three other women in close proximity to her. Two of the injured women underwent surgery yesterday while the third woman was treated for smoke inhalation; all three are expected to recover. The building reportedly had been undergoing some renovation at the time of the incident, causing early bystander speculation that the incident might have arisen from construction-related factors or perhaps an explosive gas leak. Others said they'd heard that a car had rammed the building. The only point on which all agreed was that a tragedy had occurred - and no one had ever seen so many emergency responders pouring in altogether from every direction. However, the size and nature of the blast, and Krajnyak's specific injuries, led authorities to pursue specific individualized crime-related theories, including the potential for a deliberate domestic violence incident with deadly purpose, perhaps perpetrated by using an intentional incendiary device detonated from inside a reportedly "suspicious" box that may have been delivered to the victim's office suite. For now there is not yet any irrefutable evidence to prove absolute cause-and-effect to solve this alleged crime. Various agency crime investigators are searching the site for more specific evidence of the cause, to determine conclusively if the incident was accidental or intentional. Assistant Director in charge of the Los Angeles FBI's field office, Paul Delacourt, stated that evidence has been sent for analysis at FBI headquarters in Quantico, Virginia. Meanwhile, investigations by federal, state, and local authorities are meticulous and ongoing. Anyone with any information involving this alleged crime case is urged to immediately contact the FBI's Major Case Contact Center [1.800.225.5324], and/or online, at:

05.09.18  10:52 PM    

Glenn Ranch Rd & Viejo Ridge Dr S

Lake Forest, CA


05.08.18  6:26 PM    

Silverado Canyon Rd & Santiago Canyon Rd

Silverado Canyon, CA

Griffith Observatory overlooks the Los Angeles Basin from the south face of Mount Hollywood, also providing exceptional views of the Pacific Ocean and surrounding areas.  With its spectacular public access Zeiss Telescope, views of the Hollywood Hills impress as well.  The museum, built in 1935, features Griffith’s laser projection show, dazzling visitors with cosmos tours shown on the domed ceiling in the Planetarium.

a hike

Visit the infamous Hollywood sign, or take in a show at the Samuel Oschin Planetarium. Whether you’re a tourista or Angeleno, you will appreciate Griffith’s science center, panoramic views and hiking trails.

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