SAN FRANCISCO — Fire crews battled a blaze on the upper floors of a building near Alamo Square in San Francisco on Tuesday.
The San Francisco Fire Department first reported the fire at 1604 McAllister Street on Twitter at 12:10 p.m. Initially it was reported as a 1 alarm and residents were asked to avoid the area, but nine minutes later, the department reported that the fire affected two floors.
By 12:40 p.m., the fire had reached three alarms. Hundreds of firefighters were on hand to battle the blaze.
At 2 p.m., the SFFD tweeted that crews had brought the fire under control. Firefighters rescued one person with non-life-threatening injuries.
“We are pleased to report, with an update from the hospital, that this victim is in stable condition and will be well,” fire department spokesman Jonathan Baxter said.
We also injured two firefighters, but they stayed to continue to help put out the fire.
In total, the fire displaced 13 residents and damaged two buildings. Two businesses were also affected, firefighters said.
“I opened the door and it was just a cloud of black smoke,” said building resident Justin St. Peter. “I jumped from the second floor window to the first floor…I think one of the other tenants was at the front door yelling, ‘Everybody get out, everybody get out. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have known where to go.”
Baxter said there were difficulties fighting that fire.
“We faced many challenges during this fire,” he said. “Even less it was an older building, wood frame material, we had objects obstructing entrances.”
Baxter also praised the work of the firefighters after its rollover.
“One rescue, stable condition. Thirteen residents, all counted. One building on fire, not an entire city block.” said Baxter. “That’s what your San Francisco firefighters are doing for you today.”
It was little consolation for Deborah Franklin, resident of the building
“It’s a lot…I looked up and saw flames coming out of apartment 1,” Franklin said. “Everything I owned is gone.”
The Red Cross arrived to help displaced residents, but for Franklin, the long-term shock and trauma had only just begun.
“It’s just kind of heartbreaking,” she said. “I don’t know what I’m going to do.”
The cause is still under investigation, according to the SFFD.