LA Freeway Fire Destroys Immigrant Businesses

A fire under Interstate 10 devastated some small businesses run by immigrants.

PUBLISHED NOV 16, 2023 12:37 P.M.
Share this:  
On a press conference televised by Fox 11 News, Gov. Gavin Newsom answered questions about the company that Caltrans was suing for nonpayment on the property that caught fire underneath the 10 Freeway.

On a press conference televised by Fox 11 News, Gov. Gavin Newsom answered questions about the company that Caltrans was suing for nonpayment on the property that caught fire underneath the 10 Freeway.   Screen shot of Fox News 11 broadcast

The Los Angeles Times tells a heartwrenching story related to the recent fire that could have Interstate 10 closed for weeks.

Under the freeway, a number of small businesses that operated on site and were run by immigrants were severely impacted by the fire. Some lost significant amounts of goods or equipment.

“I lost everything,” one person told the paper. “We are not educated people. Most of the people are people that crossed the border, work hard, or maybe grew up here. But we are working-class people. We break our back to barely make a good living.”

The story has another element, though—Caltrans had been trying for months to evict the landlord subleasing to these businesses, who owed $78,000 in back rent. And the land lacked basic safety precautions for the businesses, such as sprinklers or fire alarms.

All in all, the story is a reminder of the tough conditions some people, particularly immigrants, face as they attempt to eke out a living in California.

Read the full article “Immigrant businesses scraped by while landlord dodged Caltrans” on LATimes.com.

Support California Local

$10 • $25 • $50 • Our Impact
Signal Booster

Short articles which extol the virtues of a report or article put out by a local newsroom.

Join Us Today!