|Two-Alarm Fire Not the Only Problem|
Published: Friday, 21 September 2012 05:35
This home on Pacific Avenue burned last week. Neighbors say the house has other problems.
Home on Pacific Avenue has history of police activity
The Alameda Fire Department (AFD) congregated at 2002 Pacific Ave. to put out a two-alarm fire last Wednesday morning, Sept. 12.
Firefighters punctured a hole in the roof to extinguish the flames, according to Christian Schiess, who witnessed the house rescue from his home. The fire was reported at 1:03 a.m. The complex on Pacific Avenue has been a source of complaints from neighbors in the past. Alameda police have been called to the complex 71 times since August 2009, according to a Alameda Police Department (APD) calls for service report.
Forty of the seventy-one incidents involved disturbing the peace. Other incidents include: six calls for 911 emergencies, three for AFD, four for ID thefts, three for suspicious circumstances, two for disorderly conduct and one for grand theft. The service report tracked calls from July 2009 to June 2012.
"I would say this house is the only house that we have a problem with in our neighborhood," said Schiess, who is a member of the local neighborhood watch group in that area. "Besides loud noise, we have a problem with the parking overflow." Schiess said occupants of the apartment often double park or park dangerously close to the curb. The parking overflow may be a result of the complex's overcrowding. Fifteen people live in the four-unit complex, according to Colburn. The American Red Cross is currently assisting the residents with temporary accommodations.
Schiess said he and other neighborhood watch members have visited the Alameda Housing Authority to voice their complaints.
"Some of us have gone over there," he said. "But nothing really has happened." Disturbances have gone down in the first six months of 2012 compared to other six-month periods. Schiess does not believe the complex owner or the way the building is being managed had anything to do with the fire.
The 3,457-square-foot Victorian- style complex was built in 1895, according to Trulia, a real estate website. It has six bedrooms and four bathrooms and was likely a single-family home. Currently, it is a Section 8 property that is owned by Alameda resident Usha-Kiran Khade and is co-administered by the Alameda Housing Authority.
Calls to Khade and the Alameda Housing Authority were not returned by press time.
AFD believes the fire began outside the four-unit apartment building and scorched an exterior wall before it spread to the second story and roof. City fire marshals are investigating the cause. Firefighters rescued a disabled man from the complex before they put out the flames. AFD Capt.
Allyn Richterman entered the building and found the man struggling to get out, said Capt. Jim Colburn. The rescued man was treated at the scene, but did not need further assistance. One tenant was transported to a nearby hospital and two firefighters were treated at the scene for minor injuries.
Investigators do not know the cost of the damage.
The first firefighters on the scene were the crew from Fire Station No. 3 on Grand Street.