Nearly 20 displaced by SF Mission District fire

Byby Sergio Quintana KGO logo
Sunday, February 22, 2015
Nearly 20 displaced by SF Mission District fire
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Nearly 20 people in San Francisco need a new place to live after a fire ripped through their homes in the city's Mission District.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Nearly 20 people in San Francisco need a new place to live after a fire ripped through their homes in the city's Mission District. It started just after 4 p.m. Saturday near Church and 15th streets.

Video of the fire from neighbor Roberto Cosenza shows crews attacking the flames that burned two buildings and damaged a third.

San Francisco Fire Department have control over a fire burning at 15th and Church in San Francisco.

"I received a text, a group text from all the roommates in the building, saying that the apartment was on fire and I should come home, which was a little disconcerting," resident Adrian Knoll said.

Knoll showed her text to ABC7 News as she met with the Red Cross at a nearby coffee shop. Nineteen residents are displaced because of this fire.

"It's my first time experiencing sort of a tenancy fire," Knoll said. "I don't know the laws, I don't know how long we'd be out, I don't know if we'll be out so long we have to look for new places."

Among those without a home, are the owners of a cat that survived the fire. It's recovering at a veterinary hospital.

A firefighter was also treated for exhaustion.

Investigators have not determined a cause. Witnesses of the three-alarm fire say it moved really fast.

"I go outside, I see the flames and smoke, and right away I call 911," said witness Yousef Elhaj.

"We started spraying to the building on the left," said Deputy Chief Mark Gonzalez. "It also eventually got into the building, just a little bit into the attic of that other building on Church. Three buildings were involved. I would say there are six units, two businesses on Church."

A few hours after the flames were put out, residents went in with flashlights. They were looking for clothes and other necessities since they will not be staying there, at least for now.

This was the third major fire in the area in recent months. One last month near Mission and 22nd streets left one man dead and six injured. Forty residents were forced from their homes.

And in September, a five-alarm fire just down the street tore through a building packed with merchandise. Two businesses were destroyed and five people were injured in that fire.


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