Mission Bay Fire Brings Memories of Santana Row Blaze to San Jose Firefighters

By Kris Sanchez
|  Wednesday, Mar 12, 2014  |  Updated 7:03 PM PDT
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
The massive, multiple-alarm fire that erupted Tuesday in San Francisco's Mission Bay neighborhood brought back memories for firefighters who battled a similar blaze in the South Bay. Kris Sanchez reports.

The massive, multiple-alarm fire that erupted Tuesday in San Francisco's Mission Bay neighborhood brought back memories for firefighters who battled a similar blaze in the South Bay. Kris Sanchez reports.

Photos and Videos

Portion of Building Collapses in Massive SF Fire

Raw footage from the NBC chopper showing a portion of a building collapsing during a massive fire near AT&T Park in San Francisco.

RAW VIDEO: Crews Battle Mission Bay Fire

Aerial footage of San Francisco firefighters battling a massive, multiple-alarm blaze late Tuesday in the city's Mission Bay neighborhood. The video was shot by an NBC Bay Area viewer using a quadcopter drone.
More Photos and Videos

The massive, multiple-alarm fire that erupted Tuesday in San Francisco's Mission Bay neighborhood brought back memories for firefighters who battled a similar blaze in the South Bay.

The Santana Row fire that burned in San Jose 12 years ago was another construction project that raged like an inferno. It remains the biggest firefight of San Jose Fire Department Capt. Melvin Meeks' career.

"It looked unreal," Meeks said of the Santana Row blaze. "It didn't look real, it looked like a matchbox."

Meeks applauded how quickly the San Francisco Fire Department knocked down the Mission Bay fire.

"You don't even know what type of impact you're making because it's just such a huge fire," he said. "You're trying to surround it and yes, it was such a long day."

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee credited the city's auxiliary high-pressure water system in helping contain the Mission Bay fire.

San Jose Fire Marshall Johnny Dellinger said a high-pressure system is important in San Francisco, which is a high-density, high-rise city. He said in San Jose, when the fire department needs more water, crews ask three water companies to increase the pressure.

After the Santana Row fire, which caused $130 million in damage, San Jose passed an ordinance to require fire protection measures during construction, not just after.

Those measure require access to water and to the building site throughout construction, standpipes above three stories and a safety officer and safety plan to mitigate fire dangers.

"We absolutely learn from life lessons," Dellinger said. "And Santana Row was a life lesson."

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Leave Comments
Bay Area Proud
Bay Area Proud is NBC Bay... Read more
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out