Fire destroys Southwest Berkeley home

Michael Gethers/Staff

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A fire that erupted outside of a duplex in Southwest Berkeley early Thursday morning ultimately destroyed the building and took firefighters almost three hours to control as electrical lines and gas meters were also ignited by the fire. No one was injured.

At around 1:00 a.m., several 911 calls were placed by neighbors who saw the flames that eventually destroyed the building at 1517 Dwight Way and melted the aluminum casing around the duplex's two gas meters. Berkeley Fire Department firefighters responded within three minutes of the dispatch and remained on scene until 6:00 a.m., according to department Deputy Fire Chief Gil Dong.

The cause of the fire has yet to be determined, Dong said.

According to PG&E spokesperson Tamar Sarkissian, firefighters called PG&E at 2:20 a.m. and representatives responded on the scene at 3:45 a.m., at which point their services were not needed to shut off the gas valve, given that firefighters had already managed to do so. However, the PG&E crew snipped the electric line from the power pole upon arrival.

The American Red Cross is providing temporary shelter for the four residents, who had been in the duplex at the time of the fire and were left unharmed.

Contact Sarah Mohamed at [email protected]

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