Press Release: City of Berkeley Issues Summary of 2227 Dwight Fire

From Mary Kay Clunies-Ross, Public Information Officer for the City of Berkeley
Thursday March 08, 2012 - 11:29:00 AM

On Thursday, March 8 at about 4:15 a.m., a fire was reported at 2227 Dwight. It was a 2 alarm fire and was ultimately contained at about 8 a.m. Because there was still some smoldering, fire crews monitored the building for the rest of the day. 

Cause: The Berkeley Fire Department made a preliminary finding that the fire was accidental in nature and started in a water-heater closet. Damage is estimated to be at least $1 million to the 3-story, 6-unit building. 

Traffic: Dwight Way has one lane closed, but is otherwise open to traffic. 

Building Safety: The fire-damaged building has been red-tagged by the City’s building official, designating it as unsafe to enter. Because of the risk that the fire-damaged building could collapse, several surrounding buildings received yellow tags. The yellow tag designation generally means that the building is unsafe to live in, but residents can enter with a police escort in order to retrieve their belongings. Building access is limited to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

Residents: Residents of 2227 Dwight and the surrounding apartment buildings were evacuated and no injuries have been reported. The American Red Cross was on site to assist residents in their short-term housing needs, and the University of California, Berkeley is providing assistance to Cal students who were in the fire-damaged building. 

Residents who were affected by the fire, either because they lived in 2227 Dwight or because they are residents of one of the neighboring buildings, can call (510) 981-5900 for housing information or to be escorted into their building to retrieve their belongings.