SLIDESHOW: Upper Haight neighborhood fire reveals marijuana grow-op

A house fire in the Upper Haight neighborhood Tuesday afternoon might have been caused by an illegal marijuana-growing operation.

But before you say “not surprising (it is the Haight, after all),” police at the scene of the 1:30 p.m. blaze on Page Street near Ashbury Street said grow operations are not common there.

The fire began in the attic apartment of 1548 Page St. and spread next door to 1550 Page St., Fire Department Deputy Mark Gonzalez said. Three couples living at 1550 Page St. were displaced, he said, adding that none of the residents at 1548 Page St. were at the scene Tuesday afternoon.

Click on the photo to see the slideshow.

Park Police Station Lt. Mike Caplan, who was on the scene, said the fire was being investigated as arson after a “substantial” marijuana operation was found in the attic unit. The residents had apparently bypassed PG&E meters to use electricity, which can cause a fire hazard.

“There’s a lot of electrical up there that wouldn’t normally be up there,” Gonzalez said.

Such hazards are common in San Francisco, where police continue to bust grow operations. Although the Upper Haight is known for its counterculture and marijuana-smoking past, Caplan said this type of incident doesn’t happen often in the neighborhood.

 

A fireman works on extinguishing the blaze at 1548 and 1550 Page Street where an illegal marijuana grow-op allegedly caused the incident. Click on the photo to see the slideshow.

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