Fire crews battled a two-alarm fire at a vacant house in downtown Oakland, according to the Oakland Tribune, which started at about 5:20 p.m. on Wednesday, January 23, and took three hours to get under control.
Black smoke was visible in downtown Oakland, Jack London Square and over the Alameda-Oakland Estuary from about 5:20 p.m. until at least 6:30 p.m. It drifted toward Alameda initially, and then a shift in the wind pushed the smoke away from the Island.
The fire caused extensive damage to a three-story home dating from 1896 in the 600 block of Harrison Street, on the Oakland side of the Estuary.
The Oakland Fire Department says that one civilian was injured in the blaze and that three people have been detained for questioning about the blaze, which required a crew of 50 to put it out.
They suspect the fire was started in the home apparently when squatters cooked food over an open flame.