OAKLAND (CBS SF/BCN) — An early Saturday morning fire that erupted in an Oakland homeless encampment spread to the nearby Vietnamese American Community Center of the East Bay, destroying the building where 10,000 meals a week were distributed to local residents, fire officials said.
“This is obviously a huge loss for the community,” said Oakland fire spokesman Michael Hunt. “Thousands of residents rely on meals distributed by the center.”READ MORE: UPDATE: Victim, Suspect Identified In Fatal Oakland Park Shooting in Front of Children
Oakland City Council President Nikki Bas said the center’s loss was “devastating” for the city’s Eastlake and Vietnamese community.
“We were planning to come together at Clinton Park Sunday for Lunar New Year and will still come together for support, solidarity and safety for all our communities and in unity,” she said Saturday in a Twitter post.
Fire crews responded to reports of the fire in the 600 block of International Blvd shortly after 1 a.m. While the cause is still under investigation, Oakland Fire said in a Twitter post that the blaze erupted in a nearby homeless encampment.READ MORE: COVID: Youth, Adult Multi-Team Sports Can Resume In Alameda Co., Berkeley
Last night while #thetown slept, #OFD responded to a fire at the Vietnamese American Community Center. The fire started in an encampment and extended into and destroyed the community center. This is a huge loss to the community. This center prepares nearly 10k meals a week. pic.twitter.com/pw2UZaYrLK
— Oakland Firefighters (@OaklandFireLive) February 6, 2021
No injuries were reported in the fire and it’s not clear whether any residents of the homeless camp were displaced, Hunt said.MORE NEWS: UPDATE: Missing San Francisco Girl Found Safe In Pittsburg With Michigan Runaway
The fire was under control by 1:40 a.m.