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Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing 

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Old 12-04-2016, 01:13 AM
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Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

At least nine people were killed on Friday night in a warehouse fire in Oakland, Calif. The authorities expect the death toll to rise.

Quote:
OAKLAND, Calif. — Anguished family members awaited news of the fate of dozens of people still unaccounted for on Saturday after a fire gutted a makeshift nightclub in Oakland, leaving at least nine people dead.

In one of the deadliest structure fires in the United States in the past decade, partygoers at the two-story converted warehouse were asphyxiated on Friday night by thick black fumes, which poured from the building’s windows for several hours. Survivors stood across the street in a Wendy’s parking lot, watching firefighters try to put out the blaze and rescue those inside.

Oakland officials said the building, a rambling warehouse they described as “a labyrinth of artist studios,” had been under investigation for several months. They said escape from the building, which had only two exits, might have been complicated because the first and second floors were linked by an ad hoc staircase made of wooden pallets.

By Saturday afternoon, a list of those missing, compiled by friends and family, had grown to about 35 people. Officials said that the nine bodies recovered were in areas accessible to rescue crews, and that they had not been able to search the rest of the smoldering, unsafe building for at least two dozen people still missing and feared to be dead inside.

“We know that there are bodies in there that we cannot get to, that have been seen but have not been recovered,” Sgt. Ray Kelly of the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office said at an evening news conference.

Others who were believed to be missing have been accounted for, he said, adding, “We have been able to put some families’ fears at ease.”

Earlier on Saturday, Sergeant Kelly said the authorities were “expecting the worst, maybe a couple dozen victims.”

“It appears that people either made it out or they didn’t make it out,” he said.

Firefighters arrived just before midnight Friday, and the fire was still smoldering more than 12 hours later.

One survivor, Aja Archuleta, 29, a musician, was scheduled to perform at the electronic music party with her synthesizers and drum machines around 1 a.m. and was working at the door when the fire broke out around 11 or 11:15 p.m.

“There were two people on the first level who had spotted a small fire that was growing quickly,” she said. “It was a very quick and chaotic build, from a little bit of chaos to a lot of chaos.”

She added, “I have lost 20 friends in the past 24 hours.”

Family members of the missing expressed anguish over spending hours waiting to know if their relatives were inside.

Daniel Vega, 36, said he was “infuriated” waiting to hear news about his 22-year-old brother, Alex Vega, who had not answered his phone Saturday morning. Mr. Vega said he had heard from a friend that his brother was at the party.

“Give me some gloves. I’ve got work shoes. I’m ready,” Mr. Vega said. “Let me find my brother, that’s all I want.”


The building’s roof had collapsed, and the site was a dangerous scene of debris, beams and other wreckage. The structure had a permit to function as a warehouse, but not as a residence or for a party. Officials said they were investigating reports that the building had also been used as a living space.

At the news conference, Mayor Libby Schaaf said: “This is complicated. And it’s going to take us time to do the investigation that these families deserve.”

The building, known as the Ghost Ship, in the Fruitvale neighborhood, was the site of an event that was to feature a range of experimental and electronic music, performed by a synth musician drawing from the “black, queer diaspora” and others, as well as a visual installation. On Saturday morning, the event’s Facebook page said admission to the show was $10 for those who arrived before 11 p.m. and $15 after that. By the end of the day, the pricing had disappeared and the page had turned into an emergency message board, as dozens of friends and family members posted about missing loved ones.

“A lot of these people are young people,” Sergeant Kelly said. “They are from all parts of our community.” Some of the dead may be citizens of other countries, he said.

Images from the building’s website depict a wooden studio filled with antiques, sculptures and curios. Old lamps, musical instruments, suitcases and rugs decorated the ornate space.

Emergency workers said they arrived to find the building filled with heavy smoke and flames. Bodies were found on the second floor of the building, Chief Teresa Deloach Reed of the Oakland Fire Department said Saturday.

“In my career of 30 years, I haven’t experienced something of this magnitude,” she said.

Even without a full accounting, the fire was one of the deadliest in the United States in many years. In 2003, 100 people were killed in a fire in a nightclub in Warwick, R.I. An explosion at a fertilizer plant in Texas in 2013 killed 15 people.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/03/us...e-oakland.html
http://www.oaklandghostship.com/
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Old 12-04-2016, 02:03 AM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

Tragic. All that antique furniture

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Old 12-04-2016, 09:12 AM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

Quote:
The official death toll in the Oakland Ghost Ship Warehouse fire grew to least 10 early Sunday after firefighters spent the night meticulously searching the burned-out wreckage of the dilapidated two-story building that served as an illegal music venue.

Nine bodies were recovered by early Saturday night, but Alameda County Sheriff’s Sgt. Ray Kelly braced the public for an even more staggering toll when he told reporters other victims had been seen by firefighters, but their remains had yet to be recovered.

Of those victims recovered, seven had been identified and their families notified overnight.

The remains of a 10th victim were seen being recovered early Sunday with the count expected to rise as firefighters gained better access to the debris.
This is going to be a huge tragedy

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Old 12-04-2016, 04:04 PM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

Toll now stands at 30, with 25 still unaccounted for.

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Old 12-04-2016, 07:02 PM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

The first thing I think of when I enter a building is how am I going to get out if shit goes down.

Pictures from inside looks like a total fire death trap waiting to happen. RIP to those who lost their lives.

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Old 12-04-2016, 07:57 PM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

Yep, place was a death-trap. No surprises here. Just lots of stupid death. And a lot of very cool stuff lost as well.

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Old 12-04-2016, 09:42 PM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

65 killed in an airstrke in Aleppo and no one gives a fuck.
In other news the sun will rise tomorrow and the earth will keep spinning

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Old 12-05-2016, 11:01 AM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

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Originally Posted by Nite View Post
65 killed in an airstrke in Aleppo and no one gives a fuck.
In other news the sun will rise tomorrow and the earth will keep spinning
I'm so offended by that !!!

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Old 12-05-2016, 08:50 PM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

Any chance that photos of the bodies could be leaked? Would love to see the charred remains (although most likely people suffocated to death from smoke before being burned)

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Old 12-06-2016, 04:15 PM
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Re: Fire at Warehouse Party in Oakland Kills at Least 9, With Dozens Missing

36 killed.

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Alameda County district attorney Nancy O'Malley said her office has just started its probe and has not yet determined whether a crime occurred, but charges could range from murder to involuntary manslaughter.
Investigators with the district attorney's office are making sure crews removing debris do not jeopardise any evidence in a potential criminal investigation.

The fire erupted during a dance party late on Friday night. It is still unclear how it started.
Hundreds of family members and friends face an agonising wait as firefighters continue the painstaking search for victims.

The laborious job of digging with shovels and buckets through the debris was suspended overnight because of a dangerously unstable wall.
The cluttered warehouse had been converted to artists' studios and illegal living spaces, and former residents said it was a death trap of piled wood, furniture, snaking electrical cords and only two exits.

Ms O'Malley said. "We just started our investigation, and we owe it to the community and those who perished in this fire, and those who survived the fire, to be methodical, to be thorough, and to take the amount of time it takes to be able to look at every piece of potential evidence."
Oakland city councillor Noel Gallo, who lives a block from the warehouse, said he confronted the property's manager - Derick Ion Almena - several times about neighbours' concerns over rubbish in the street and in front of the warehouse.

Mr Gallo said Mr Almena essentially told authorities to "mind their own business" and appeared resistant to addressing complaints and complying with city codes.
Mr Almena and his partner Micah Allison ran the building's arts colony, called the Satya Yuga collective. They were believed to have been away at the time of the blaze.

The warehouse is owned by Chor N Ng, her daughter Eva Ng told the Los Angeles Times. She said the warehouse was leased as studio space for an art collective and was not being used as a dwelling.
"We are also trying to figure out what's going on like everybody else," the family wrote in a statement to NBC Bay Area. "Our condolences go out to the families and friends of those injured and those who lost their lives."

Questions persisted about whether city officials could have done more to prevent the fire. Oakland planning officials opened an investigation last month after repeated complaints about the warehouse. An inspector who went to the premises could not get inside, said Darin Ranelletti, of Oakland Planning Department.
Oakland mayor Libby Schaaf said city officials are putting together a record of what they knew about the property.

Investigators said they believe they have located the section of the building where the fire started, but the cause remains unknown.

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