Fire breaks out in San Francisco’s Chinatown


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Seven businesses and over 25 residents were disturbed by the fire that broke out in Chinatown on Friday, Feb. 3. Residents are currently staying at the Salvation Army’s Chinatown Corps.

Sarah Tocatlian , Staff Writer

On Friday, Feb. 3, a two-alarm fire broke out in Chinatown in San Francisco.

At 7:47 a.m., the San Francisco Fire Department (SFFD) received reports that a fire had started in a two-story building, located at the corner of Pacific, near the Stockton Street Tunnel. Four fire trucks were sent to the scene.

The fire started in the basement of a grocery market called Chong Hing. Fortunately, firefighters were able to prevent it from spreading to neighboring buildings and successfully contained it by 1:45 p.m. that day.

According to the SF Gate, firefighters pulled a man out of the burning building. The man was taken to the hospital in serious condition. His injuries were later classified as non-life-threatening. Another man suffered from minor smoke inhalation but was not brought to the hospital.

The Red Cross and Salvation Army were on standby to provide aid. 

“Keeping this community close to its home is so important for their recovery in this incident,” said Director for the Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services John McKnight in a statement.

Seven businesses and at least 25 residents were disturbed by the fire. The building was half residential and half commercial and housed multiple businesses on the first floor and 28 residential units on the second floor.

Those impacted by the fire are currently staying at the Salvation Army’s Chinatown Corps on Powell St.

Following the closure of the shelter, we will continue to support these folks as we know recovery will take time.

— Director for the Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services John McKnight

According to NBC, the affected businesses are receiving support from the city’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development.

“It’s important that San Francisco small businesses know that the city is here to help when they face unforeseen events,” said Mayor Ed Lee. “Through the Small Business Disaster Fund, the small businesses impacted by the fire in Chinatown will get the resources and assistance they need to recover quickly and resume operations. ”

There was not the need for any evacuations of the area, but the intersection of Stockton and Pacific streets was taped off on Friday. Authorities asked people to avoid the area and advised residents to close their windows to avoid smoke and debris. The cause of the fire is still unknown, and the incident is under investigation.

“It’s scary to think that a fire can spread that quickly and affect so many people, but it is great to hear that many organizations and associations are there to help,” said junior Grant Norman.