Smoke Heater Likely Cause of Oakland Fire

It was a scary Monday morning for some residents near Oakland's Lake Merritt neighborhood

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Christie Smith reports on a fire at a three story apartment complex in Oakland that displaced several residents. (Published Monday, Dec 17, 2012)

    It was a scary Monday morning for some residents near Oakland's Lake Merritt neighborhood.  A one-alarm fire broke out in a three-story, four-unit apartment building on Warfield Avenue around 8 a.m., causing one unit on the top floor to burn and the lower units to suffer smoke damage.

     The cause is under investigation, but fire investigators say that the preliminary investigation shows that it was likely a space heater too close to the furniture.

    Six to eight people were temporarily displaced and were receiving help from the Red Cross.
     
    Firefighters say by the time they arrived the residents had evacuated.  At least one person may have suffered minor smoke inhalation  The fire was stubborn and moved quickly through the top floor. 
     
    Resident Marc Gordon says his neighbors unit caught fire in the bedroom.  He says he tried to help, he ran into a bedroom that was burning and saw blankets on fire.
     
    "I tried to use my fire extinguisher but the fire was just too hot."