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Suspicious Restaurant Fire Shuts Down Santa Clara Avenue

Santa Clara Avenue, between Park and Oak Street, will remain closed the rest of the morning according to an Alameda Fire Department official.

A suspicious fire caused almost $450,000 in damages to a Santa Clara Avenue restaurant this morning.

Multiple callers reported smoke coming from the building of the American Oak restaurant on the 2300 block of Santa Clara Avenue starting at 6:16 a.m. according to Fire Capt. Jim Colburn.

Firefighters forced entry into the restaurant and were able to save the building. However, a lot of damage was done inside, according to Colburn. He said around $250,000 worth of damage was estimated for the structure and $200,000 worth of damages to the contents inside.

"It appears that the fire started in multiple areas so it's deemed suspicious," Colburn said.

No injuries were reported and the fire is further being investigated.

Santa Clara Avenue between Oak Street and Park Street will remain closed most of the morning Colburn said.

He added that this is the fourth fire APD has dealt with the last five days.

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Analisa Harangozo December 12, 2012 at 09:40 PM
Jenna, AFD will update us once any new info arises from this.
Jon Spangler January 01, 2013 at 07:40 PM
Jenna, friends of mine in AFD told me that a thorough arson investigation, which involves extensive and complicated chemical testing, usually takes several weeks or more, depending on the nature of the fire. The good news is that arson investigators, with the help of sophisticated labs, can find out almost every detail of how and where a fire was set, which usually leads to finding out who set the fire(s).
Lisbeth Allen January 02, 2013 at 05:37 PM
Jon, thanks for the technical information. I know there was an outpouring of fundraising efforts from the restaurant community, and we would all like to get this evil person out of our neighborhood.
Michael January 05, 2013 at 09:39 PM
Any update on this? There were two arson fires in downtown Alameda within a two week period. The other was at Alameda High.
Lisbeth Allen January 05, 2013 at 09:52 PM
I didn't know there were two fires. Scary.

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