I must've been drunk & passed out in front of the TV saying my prayers when this went down last night, because I just found out about this. What an awful way to die.....FYI, This building (the ONLY high rise in the area) is such an eyesore that sticks out among all of the other gorgeous ocean view properties....(think: late 60's style, matte finish, turquoise paneled, tall cracker box.....hopefully this is a wake up call to the property management to install sprinklers on every floor, and how about an exterior face lift (lose those damn blue panels already!)......I'm related (via about 3 degrees of separation) to the architects of this building.
Here's the story from our local newspaper:
One man died as a three-alarm fire broke out in a 20-story residential high-rise on Ocean Boulevard Wednesday night. The blaze was first reported shortly after 9:30 p.m. on the 18th floor of the Galaxy Towers, 2999 E. Ocean Blvd.
A man, a tenant on the 18th floor, jumped to his death, according to Long Beach Fire Department Capt. Mike DuRee.
Bellflower resident Saida Caal was walking along the beach when the fire started. "There was a person on the balcony screaming for help," she said. "The guy was screaming for help for like 10 or 15 minutes. The fire came at him and he was catching on fire, and he just jumped off the balcony." "He was screaming 'Help me, I don't want to die' ".
The fire, believed to be confined to the unit in the east wing of the 18th floor where it broke out, was contained by about 10:25 p.m., DuRee said. The victim was alone at the time of the fire and it was unclear if anyone else lived in the unit.
The cause of the fire has not yet been determined, DuRee said. There were no sprinklers in the building, just dry standpipes, which are big chutes through which firefighters can pump water. The building is made of steel and concrete. Firefighters ordered residents to shut their doors and windows to prevent the spread of smoke and flames.
Bluff Park's Galaxy Towers, a 1966 high-rise, was designed by renowned local architects Hugh and Donald Gibbs. The firm also designed Long Beach City Hall and Main Library, the Terrace Theater, Long Beach Memorial Medical Center and Millikan High School. The building - unusual because it was constructed without common walls between units - caused an uproar in residential Bluff Park at the time because of its height. The city had rezoned the bluff area to encourage high-rise developments, but after it was built neighbors complained that it blocked their views, leading the city to reverse its zoning decision.