Fire Station 69 to Remove Large Trees from Property; Reminds Residents of Brush Clearance, Open House

By Sue Pascoe

Fire Service Day, May 13

The second Saturday of each May is designated “Fire Service Recognition Day” and select stations around the city are open for residents to visit. Station 69, at Carey Street and Sunset Boulevard, will once again open its doors from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on May 13. There will be Jaws of Life demonstrations, T-shirts for sale, hot dogs and drinks, and lots of brochures and pamphlets detailing brush clearance and other fire safety information. As always, youngsters can sit in the fire trucks, see inside the paramedic vehicle and meet firefighters.

But as C-platoon Captains Erik Schneider and Tom Moore, told the News, “The fire station is open year-round if you want to come and visit. Just stop by and say ‘Hi!’”

Brush Clearance Compliance

According to Captain Anthony Valdez, if you haven’t received your annual affidavit reminding you to perform brush clearance on your property, it will be coming “the end of May.” He said the LAFD is changing computer systems and 166,000 addresses have to be fed manually into a computer. “May 1 is still the date that clearance needs to be done.”

Inspections are underway, starting in the Bel-Air area, and the brush clearance unit will work its way west towards the ocean over the next four weeks. The area around Fire Station 19 (Brentwood) will be next, then the Palisades area covered by Stations 69 and 23. Those parcels that have not been properly cleared will receive a notice and the homeowner will have 15 days to comply. These properties will be inspected again, and if the property is still not in compliance, the owner will be notified. If the LAFD Brush Unit has to clear the property, the owner will be charged for the cost of clearance, plus a $432 inspection fee, plus a $1,304 administrative fee. Valdez recommends, “Do the clearance now.” Visit for more information. 

Landscaping Update

Fire Station 69 will perform its own brush clearance sometime in early May. Two large pine trees, about 80 ft. tall, will have to be removed. One is less than three feet from the station, the other is about six feet from the station. Both have outgrown the area.

They were planted in 1967 when the station was completed, and most likely before people realized that planting trees that grow so big would have consequences for the structural integrity of a house/station.

Roots from the two pine trees are pushing out the wall and compromising the building.
Roots from the two pine trees are pushing out the wall and compromising the building.

Additionally, large trees planted too close to a building often send out roots seeking the sewage lines for water, causing plumbing problems.

Captain Valdez said that pine trees and eucalyptus are also not a good choice for residential areas. “They’re like a candle,” he said. “They can really burn because they have so much oil in them.” A tree specialist has already visited the station and said the trees have to come out. The LAFD may be able to move them to a better location.

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