OAKLAND (CBS SF) — An early morning two-alarm blaze erupted outside an Oakland four-plex Tuesday, quickly spreading into the building, sending firefighters and residents scrambling for safety.

Oakland Fire Battalion Chief Heather Mozdean said flames were roaring outside and inside the building when crews first arrived at the building in the 3000 block of Martin Luther King Jr. Way at 2:30 a.m.

A second alarm was quickly called to keep the fire from spreading to nearby homes.

“When we got on the scene, we had heavy fire,” she told KPIX 5. “We were unable to determine exactly where the fire was coming from. I sent crews interior…sent a crew to the backside and we attacked this thing from every direction.”

But the damage to the building was extensive and roof began collapsing.

“We had crews inside for about 25 minutes,” Mozdean said. “We pulled everyone out and dumped a ton of water on it.”

One firefighter suffered a hand injury and was taken to the hospital for treatment and has been released. The nine residents living in the building were able to escape unharmed.

A cause of the fire was under investigation. Firefighters believe it started in an exterior courtyard. The building was considered a total loss as a result of damage from the blaze.

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