A 25-year-old Coronado man was among at least 33 people killed in a massive three-alarm fire that broke out during a party at a converted warehouse in Oakland.
Nick Gomez-Hall of Coronado was one of seven victims publicly identified by the Alameda County Sheriff‘s Office Coroner’s Bureau Sunday.
The fire broke out late Friday inside a warehouse on West 31st Street known as the Oakland Ghost Ship. As of Sunday evening, authorities had searched about 30 percent of the partially collapsed building, according to a statement from the city of Oakland. The building was reportedly used by artists who lived and worked together.
The fire broke out while most of the partygoers were on the second floor, according to media reports. The only way out was through the first floor and many victims couldn’t make it through the labyrinth of artist work spaces downstairs, authorities said.
City officials said the last permitted use of the building was as a warehouse. On Nov. 13, the city received complaints about “blight and unpermitted interior construction,” but a building inspector who visited the property later that week could not gain access.
A criminal investigation into the cause of the fire was ongoing, according to city officials.
“We are committed to bringing every resource to bear to determine what happened here and how such a tragic event could have occurred,” city officials said in the statement.
The fire is the deadliest in Oakland history, and the seventh deadliest U.S. building fire in the past 50 years, according to NBC News.
— City News Service
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