Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Engine 70 (San Pablo), Engine 69 (El Sobrante), along with Richmond Fire Department Engine 66 and Truck 68 and El Cerrito Fire Department Engine 71 responded to a residential structure fire at 1414 Amador Street in San Pablo at 12:25pm on Monday, October 14th. Engine 70 arrived at the fire within 4 minutes and reported smoke showing from the first floor unit of a two story, two unit apartment building. Firefighters completed a size-up and initiated an offensive strategy of forcible entry, fire attack, search, and ventilation. The fire was quickly extinguished in less than 10 minutes and isolated to one room and the contents of the first floor apartment. Firefighters also searched and checked the second floor apartment for victims and possible fire extension. The first floor unit was unoccupied at the time of the fire and the neighbor upstairs was able to evacuate on her own. The two occupants of the unit, one adult and one juvenile, were displaced by the fire and were assisted by the American Red Cross with temporary housing.
The fire caused approximately $10,000 in damage to the structure and loss of contents. The majority of the involved apartment and the upstairs apartment were saved by firefighters’ extinguishment and salvage efforts. The cause of this fire appears to be accidental but remains under investigation by the Fire District’s Fire Investigation Unit.
This fire demonstrates the value of residential smoke alarms. The fire was reported by the upstairs neighbor who was asleep at the time of the fire, but was awoken by the smoke alarm going off in the apartment below. She investigated the alarm, smelled smoke, evacuated, and called 911. This success chain may have saved her life and provided early notification to the Fire Department which limited the magnitude of the fire. The Contra Costa County Fire Protection District urges all residents to make sure they have at least one properly maintained smoke alarm in place on each level of their home. http://www.nfpa.org/safety-information/for-consumers/fire-and-safety-equipment/smoke-alarms/smoke-alarm-safety-tips. The Fire District also provides free smoke alarm installations. Information is available at WWW.CCCFPD.ORG
Media Contact: Lewis Broschard, Fire Marshal/PIO