1 Firefighter Dead, 2 Hurt In San Francisco Diamond Heights Fire

CBS San Francisco
CBC San FranciscoJune 2, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS 5) — One firefighter died, another was critically injured and a third suffered less serious burns while battling a fire in San Francisco's Diamond Heights neighborhood Thursday.

SFFD Chief Joanne Hayes-White confirmed to CBS 5 that one of three injured firefighters taken to San Francisco General Hospital later died from his injuries.

Hospital spokeswoman Rachael Kagan identified the deceased as a male firefighter. She said a second male firefighter was in critical condition, and a third firefighter, a female, was in fair condition.

View video report.

The fire broke out about 10:45 a.m. at a four-story home on a slope in the 100 block of Berkeley Way.

The blaze started on the first floor of the home and quickly spread to the second story, SFFD Lt. Mindy Talmadge said.

Talmadge indicated that firefighters saw a flash while inside the home. Around that time, a heat alarm on one of the firefighters' uniforms was activated, she said.

When commanders on the outside tried to reach the firefighters by radio, there was no response. Additional crew members were sent in, and they found the two male firefighters down and "pretty badly burned," Talmadge said.

The female injured firefighter was able to exit the home without help, she said.

The fire was finally extinguished shortly before noon.

The last time a San Francisco firefighter died battling a house fire in Diamond Heights was March 9, 1995, according to CBS 5 archives.

The deceased in that case was one of several injured firefighters who were trapped inside the burning home on a hill at 75 Everson Street.