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'Unattended Cooking' Suspected Cause of Apartment Fire

A second fire broke out in a carport down the street a few hours later.

Screenshot of ABC 7 website (http://www.insidebayarea.com)  of 22000 block of Seventh Street
Screenshot of ABC 7 website (http://www.insidebayarea.com) of 22000 block of Seventh Street
By Bay City News—

Unattended cooking caused a fire in a Hayward apartment late Thursday night that prompted three people, including a 3-year-old boy, to escape via a second-story window, a fire department spokesman said today.
 
Crews responded to multiple reports of a fire in the 22000 block of Seventh Street just before 11 p.m. Thursday, Hayward fire spokesman Don Nichelson said.

[Related article: Toddler Tossed, Caught By Neighbor While Others Jump From Second Story Window During Fire]
 
Arriving firefighters located heavy smoke and fire coming from a top-floor apartment of a two-story, four-unit building, Nichelson said. Nichelson said five residents were in the home when the fire broke out.

The 3-year-old boy was staying with his grandparents and his aunt and uncle were in the home as well. The aunt and uncle escaped through the front door but the grandmother and grandfather had to jump from a bedroom window about 25 feet down to the ground.
 
The child was thrown from the window and was caught by his aunt and uncle waiting below, according to Nichelson. The child was transported to a hospital for evaluation but was uninjured.

The grandfather suffered a possible ankle fracture and the grandmother suffered a laceration to her head and a possible hip fracture, Nichelson said.
 
No one else was injured. The fire started in the kitchen, where someone was cooking and left their food unattended, Nichelson said. Firefighters knocked the fire down at about 11:15 p.m. Nichelson said the apartment was a total loss.

The three other apartments in the building sustained smoke and water damage but were salvageable. Twelve residents in the building were displaced in the blaze.
 
Hours later, another fire broke out in a carport down the block. Reporters still on the scene covering the initial fire noticed smoke and an orange glow coming from another apartment building about 60 yards away and reported the fire at 4:48 a.m., Nichelson said.
 
Nine cars burned in the blaze and radiant heat caused minor damage to the building, including broken windows and melted window casings. There were no injuries in that fire, Nichelson said. The cause is under investigation.

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