41 People Displaced by 5-Alarm Fire in SF - NBC Bay Area

41 People Displaced by 5-Alarm Fire in SF

The blaze ripped through an apartment complex near Alamo Square Thursday, causing $8 million in damage.



    This is raw video of the fire in San Francisco. (Published Thursday, Dec. 22, 2011)

    More than 40 people were displaced by the five-alarm fire near San Francisco's Alamo Square on Thursday, officials said.

    The fire, which was first reported shortly before noon at a three-unit Victorian home at 1502 Golden Gate Ave., affected a total of 28 units in three buildings, American Red Cross spokeswoman Elizabeth Shemaria said today.

    Three people were injured, including two firefighters, one who received burns to the neck and one who was treated for exhaustion. A civilian was taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation.

    The fire caused an estimated $8 million in structural damage.

    The blaze displaced 38 adults, three children and possibly some pets, Shemaria said.

    The Red Cross had assisted 16 people at an evacuation center set up for the fire as of Thursday evening, she said.

    San Francisco fire officials this morning said they are still investigating the cause of the fire, which spread rapidly along the rear of the affected buildings and was not brought under control until shortly after 3 p.m.

    Windy conditions, and the fact that the building where it started was a wooden structure attached to other buildings, made fighting the fire challenging for the estimated 140 firefighters on the scene, Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White said Thursday.

    At least two people suffered minor injuries in the fire -- a firefighter who suffered neck burns and a civilian who suffered smoke inhalation, Hayes-White said.

    The fire drew dozens of people out to nearby streets and prompted the evacuation of a nearby elderly care facility due to the heavy smoke.

    The building where the fire started is adjacent to the Creative Arts Charter School. The school is currently on winter break.

    The Red Cross evacuation center is located at the Missionary Temple church at 1455 Golden Gate Ave. Residents who need housing, food or other assistance are advised to go to the evacuation center or call (888) 4-HELP-BAY.

    Those wishing to donate to the fire victims can contact the Red Cross at (888) 4-HELP-BAY or visit www.redcrossbayarea.org.

    Bay City News