Fire breaks out at Castro Street encampment for 2nd straight night

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Fire breaks out at Richmond homeless encampment for second straight night
Photo courtesy of Richmond Firefighters Local 188.

By Mike Kinney

For a second straight night, Richmond firefighters battled a large blaze at a homeless encampment in the area of Castro and Hensley streets near Richmond Parkway.

Firefighters responded to the incident about 11 p.m., according to Richmond Fire Battalion Chief Noah Brownlow. A vehicle, RV and trailer were burned, Brownlow said.

Firefighters had responded to a fire at the same homeless encampment the previous night, Brownlow said. Thankfully, the fires were extinguished in both cases without reports of injuries.

Such fires are not unusual. The Richmond Fire Department responds to outdoor fires daily, according to Brownlow, who added his agency responds to about 50 calls for service per month at homeless encampments.

“When we do our investigations at these encampments people have been cooking or trying to keep warm,” he said. “When you have generators outside, that is how fires get started in these encampments a lot of the time.”

Photo courtesy of Richmond Firefighters Local 188.