Long Beach Fire Station 9 in Los Cerritos neighborhood closes due to mold issues

The Long Beach Fire Department is looking for a temporary location for its Station 9 after the 1930s firehouse in the Los Cerritos neighborhood closed this year due to mold issues.

Fire Department spokesman Brian Fisk said the mold problem in Station 9 was first discovered and treated in December 2017. The mold reappeared in June and firefighters were relocated to nearby stations.

Built in 1938, Station 9 at 3917 Long Beach Blvd. is one of the oldest and smallest of the department’s 24 stations.

Fisk said the department is looking for a temporary lot where it can set up a trailer to serve the area. With the recurring mold problems, he said, it’s too early to tell what will become of Station 9.

“The Long Beach Fire Department is committed to serving the people living and working in this service area while maintaining the safety of its firefighters,” he said.

Rescue 9, a paramedic/ambulance truck, is being temporally housed at Station 13 in the Westside neighborhood. Fire Engine 9 is being housed at Station 16 near Long Beach Airport.

Fisk said some of the area that was traditionally served by Station 9 could see increased response times. The truck and engine are both patrolling the area during the day to reduce response times, he said.    

“We’re working diligently to actively patrol the area by day,” he said. “We’re doing training; inspections; we’re where we would be normally.”   

City officials said the fire department is also working on securing possible grant funding to restore Engine 17 at 2241 Argonne Ave. on the East Side. The station’s water-carrying engine was shuttered in budget cuts in 2012, leaving a major hole for service spanning from the 405 Freeway, south to the Seventh Street, west to Temple Avenue and east to Bellflower Boulevard.

For the 2019 budget, Mayor Robert Garcia recommended restoring Engine 17 with 12 new firefighters, but the city did not designate funding.

The city’s proposed 2020 budget does not include any structural funding for Engine 17.

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Kelly Puente is a general assignment and special projects reporter at the Long Beach Post. Her prolific reporting has taken her all over Southern California—even to the small Catalina Island town of Two Harbors. She is a Tiki mug collector and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in public policy and administration at Cal State Long Beach. Reach her at [email protected].
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