(KRON) — Smoke was still visible in Oakland Thursday morning after a large pile of scrap metal caught fire near the city’s port Wednesday evening. The smoke could be smelled from across the East Bay.
Oakland fire crews responded to 1101 Embarcadero West for a fire at Schnitzer Steel/Radius Recycling just after 5:30 p.m. Fire crews contained the fire to one pile of debris by 6:30 p.m., the Oakland Fire Department confirmed.
Twenty Oakland firefighters along with fireboats from San Francisco and Alameda conducted several hours of fire suppression efforts. The fire was under control by 9 p.m., according to the City of Oakland. It was officially put out on Thursday.
Fire crews and equipment operators from the facility worked through the night and into the morning to pull apart the debris pile where the fire originated. According to the city, there is still a large amount of debris to untangle in the initial pile. Crews continue to spray water on the area to prevent flare-ups. That is causing smoke to emanate from the pile, although it is much lighter than it was Wednesday, according to KRON4’s Charles Clifford at the scene.
The cause of the fire is unknown, and no injuries have been reported.
How the fire is impacting Bay Area air quality
The Bay Area Air Quality Management District is investigating the blaze. It said the plume of smoke is expected to travel south throughout the night and impact air quality in the area. BAAQMD issued an air quality advisory but not a “Spare the Air” alert.
Air quality may be affected in Alameda, southern Oakland, San Leandro, Hayward, and possibly Fremont, according to the city of Oakland. People in those areas are advised to follow advice from local officials.
Those in the area of the fire are urged to keep their windows closed.
“If the smell of smoke is present, it is important that Bay Area residents protect their health by avoiding exposure,” BAAQMD said. “If possible, stay inside with windows and doors closed until smoke levels subside. Set air conditioning units and car vent systems to re-circulate to prevent outside air from moving inside.”
While smoke was still emanating from the fire Thursday morning, firefighters gained control of the blaze. With smoke from the fire expected to continue to impact the East and South Bay, the BAAQMD extended an air quality advisory into Thursday.
No Spare the Air alert was issued and there is no restriction on outdoor work. The City of Oakland advises residents who smell smoke to protect their health by avoiding exposure, staying inside with windows closed if possible, and setting air conditioning units and car vents to re-circulate.
BAAQMD issued two notices of violation to Schnitzer Steel for the fire.