3-alarm fire at commercial nursery in San Jose

Courtesy of San Jose Fire Department Photographer Craig Allyn Rose
August 29, 2012 11:50:01 AM PDT
San Jose firefighters made the very tough decision to let a massive nursery burn to the ground this morning.

When firefighters arrived about midnight, the 50-year-old Summer Winds Nursery was engulfed in flames.

"It was determined at the time that the priority was to let it burn off, that would create less of a hazard then dumping thousands and thousands and thousands of gallons of water on it," said San Jose Fire Department Capt. David Barnett.

This morning, with the fire out, the water that was used in spots, but prevented from entering the storm gutters, was tested to see if the plan worked.

"Most of the products here are organic, there are only a few products here that are a concern and the testing as I said was well below anything hazardous," said Barnett.

The regional manager for the Summer Winds Nursery chain raced to the scene in the middle of the night, but could only watch his business burn to the ground. He choked up a bit when asked about his thoughts.

"I don't know what thoughts I have, memories, a lot of memories in this store, 50 years of doing business. Alot of good people have worked here. It's kind of tough to see it go. We will be back though," said Leo Goria of Summer Winds Nursery.

Nursery employee Octaviano Romero arrived at work this morning concerned his job, like the building itself, had been lost.

"It scares me because I don't have a job right now, I have worked for 12 years here," said Romero.

The regional manager later assured him he still had his job.

The cause of the fire is under investigation and considered not suspicious. It started in the part of the building that houses the electrical panel.


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