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Some A**hole Set Oakland’s 52-Foot Xmas Tree on Fire

Jack London Square’s Christmas tree was saved from extensive damage thanks to Oakland’s Fire Department responding within 90 seconds
By - posted 12/6/2021 No Comment

By Keith Burbank, Bay City News

A holiday tree-lighting ceremony may still be on for this weekend in Oakland’s Jack London Square despite a fire early Monday morning that scorched about 10 percent of the tree, a fire department spokesman said.

Quick work by firefighters at about 1:20 a.m. kept the fire from burning more of the tree, at Embarcadero and Water Street.

“The tree is structurally sound,” fire department spokesman Michael Hunt said. But he said it’s “very disheartening” that it happened at all.

An aerosol cannister was found at the scene, leading investigators to believe the fire was intentionally set.

Fortunately for the tree, the nearest fire station is only a block away. Crews were on the scene in about 90 seconds and the blaze was out in about five minutes, Hunt said.

But the fire ran the entire trunk of the tree, which is 52 feet tall.

An assessment will be done Monday and Tuesday of the tree’s lights and power source for the lights, which appears to be damaged, Hunt said.

According to the organizers, the free lighting ceremony will still take place and is scheduled for Saturday, December 11th from 6 to 8 p.m.

Anyone with information about the person or persons responsible for the fire is asked to please call the Oakland Fire Department arson investigator at (510) 238-4031.

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