Multiple vehicles were burning in a wrecking yard in the area of 400 W. Gertrude Ave. in Richmond on Friday morning. (Courtesy California Highway Patrol via Twitter)

UPDATE: Fire at auto wrecking yard burns 200 vehicles

UPDATE 11:21 A.M.:

A fire in a Richmond auto wrecking yard that sent a huge column of black smoke into the air and kept nearby residents sheltered in their homes for nearly three hours is now under control, according to a Contra Costa County fire spokesperson.

Firefighters first responded to the fire at West Gertrude Avenue and Richmond Parkway a little after 7 a.m. and issued the shelter-in-place order for neighborhoods in the immediate area at about 8 a.m.

Crews had the fire under control by about 10 a.m. and lifted the shelter-in-place order at about 10:50 a.m., according to Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Fire Marshal Robert Marshall.

Richmond Parkway will likely remain closed in both directions from Pittsburg Avenue to Gertrude Avenue for most of the day.

It’s not clear what started the fire, which burned about 200 cars, but it appears to be accidental, Marshall said.

The fire seems to have started in one car and spread quickly to many others partly due to the strong winds that were blowing through the area at the time, Marshall said.

The cars in the wrecking yard are stacked on top of each other and the fire was able to easily jump from one car to another.

No injuries were reported and no structures burned, Marshall said.

Crews have been continually conducting air quality monitoring during the incident.

The fire was listed as one-alarm but required additional, specialized crews and equipment from the nearby Chevron Richmond Refinery.

The Chevron crews provided the foam fire retardant that was the key to eventually dousing the blaze, Marshall said.

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

City officials closed San Francisco County Jail No. 4 on the top floor of the Hall of Justice at 850 Bryant St. in September, reducing the number of beds in the jail system by about 400. 
Kevin N. Hume/
S.F. Examiner
SF jail closure prompts doctor to call for release of more inmates

Reduced space increases risk of COVID-19 spreading among those in custody

Cyclists have flocked to Market Street since private vehicles were largely banned from a long stretch of it in January. (Amanda Peterson/Special to the S.F. Examiner)
Plans for sidewalk-level bikeway on Market Street dropped due to costs, increased cyclist volume

Advocates say revisions to Better Market Street fail to meet safety goals of project

Prop. 21 would allow San Francisco city officials to expand rent control to cover thousands more units. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Tenant advocates take another try at expanding rent control with Prop. 21

Measure would allow city to impose new protections on properties 15 years or older

Tenderloin residents are finding benefits to having roads closed in the neighborhood. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
Should there be fewer cars in the Tenderloin’s future?

The pandemic has opened San Franciscans’ eyes to new uses of urban streets

Singer-songwriter Cam is finding musicmaking to be healing during 2020’s world health crisis. 
Courtesy 
Dennis Leupold
Cam challenges country music tropes

Bay Area-bred songwriter releases ‘The Otherside’

Most Read