Five-alarm fire destroys former TV station

On Sunday, April 13, 2014 at 1509 hours, units of the San José Fire Department responded to multiple reports of fire in a vacant building at 645 Park Avenue west of downtown San José. The structure, once home to local television station KNTV 11, had been vacant for a number of years.

As firefighters went en route smoke was visible from the area prompting a request for a second-alarm to bolster the initial full first alarm assignment. With additional units arriving on scene a third-alarm was struck at 1525 hours as it became apparent that the fire was well established and spreading rapidly throughout the building.

Additional alarms were eventually requested bringing mutual aid companies from the City of Santa Clara, Sunnyvale and Santa Clara County Fire to the scene to assist with containing the blaze. Crews assumed a defensive strategy throughout the duration of the incident due to rapidly deteriorating conditions on the interior. With fire spreading throughout the structure portions of the building began to collapse leaving firefighters to focus on preventing the blaze from spreading to nearby properties.

Although the building was abandoned dozens of squatters had taken up residence inside the structure. Two firefighters suffered minor injuries and one piece of fire apparatus was slightly damaged due to exposure to the intense heat.

APRIL 16, 2014 - UPDATE: ARSON SUSPECT ARRESTED BY THE SAN JOSÉ FIRE DEPARTMENT AND SAN JOSÉ POLICE DEPARTMENT.

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