Watch CBS News

Authorities Call 4-Alarm Millbrae Fire 'Suspicious'

MILLBRAE (CBS SF) – Fire investigators said a four-alarm fire that destroyed the Millbrae Community Center Thursday morning appears to be suspicious in nature.

Crews will be at the scene for most of the day to mop up and continue the investigation into what might have caused the blaze, Central County Fire Chief John Kammeyer said.

Investigators said how and where the fire started raised the specter that it was intentionally set.

"We think it started from the exterior to the interior. It's hard to start that naturally," said Kammeyer. "So that's why we're focusing it on being suspicious."

The fire was reported at 3:52 a.m. at the building at 477 Lincoln Circle.

Flames tore through the community center, eventually causing parts of the roof to collapse. The fire was under control by about 8:15 a.m., Kammeyer said.

Firefighters remained at the scene Thursday morning to put out any hot spots. Because of concerns over the structural stability of the building, crews used a drone provided by a private contractor to fly overhead to see where flames might still be burning, Kammeyer said.

No injuries were reported in the fire but the building is "a total loss," he said.

Investigators will work to try to determine the cause and origin of the fire, he said.

The Millbrae Community Center was a popular venue for community events and programs. Kammeyer said a teen camp that was taking place there this week has been relocated to nearby Taylor Middle School.

© Copyright 2016 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.