Saturday, April 29, 2006

Fire in the Hayes Valley

A little after 8 pm on Friday the 28th, we saw flames leaping into the air in the Hayes Valley.

There was a fire on Grove Street between Octavia and Laguna...

...that was threatening the entire neighborhood.

Burning cinders were flying through the air and landing on gawkers...

...who were mostly neighbors worried about their own homes.

The firemen did a great job at controlling the blaze...

...which only destroyed the one wooden Victorian...

...and its two neighbors on either side.

The entire neighborhood filled up with smoke and according to somebody who worked at the Opera House, the vents there were sucking in smoke from the outside into the concert hall, driving away the balletomanes from that evening's performance of "Sylvia."

I hope everyone got out of their buildings safely.
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Update: According to Cicero Estrella in the "San Francisco Chronicle," everyone did get out safely, the Victorian where the fire originated was vacant.

He continues:
"About 125 firefighters and 30 engines responded to the fire. The cause of the blaze was under investigation, Fire Chief Hayes-White said.

Residents of the block said the house has been under renovation for at least one year, and that drug dealers and users have broken into the house a number of times."

The next day the Fire Department came out for an inspection of the three buildings thad had burned.

A young woman resident from this building was sorting through the burnt debris on the sidewalk for remnants of her journal.

I didn't take her picture because she was in such obvious shock but offered her my sympathies instead. "It's okay, I've got a lot of good friends," she replied before wandering away.


sfwillie said...

Nice flame shots. But why devote so much space to a simple house fire when you could be covering more important issues, such as Barry Bonds' steroid use?

Ray Bridges said...

I lost everything to a fire once. Even the loss of shelter seems trivial when you realize you're not dead, and your most valuable possessions are your friends, safe from fire.