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Electric scooter fire in Tenderloin apartment displaces residents

A fire engine and fire truck with a ladder with firefighters stand outside an apartment building at nighttime.
San Francisco Fire Department firefighters respond to a Tenderloin neighborhood apartment fire early Wednesday. | Source: Courtesy San Francisco Fire Department

At least four residents were displaced after firefighters extinguished a San Francisco apartment building fire caused by an electric scooter, authorities said.

At 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, firefighters were dispatched to a single-alarm incident at a six-story building at Leavenworth and O'Farrell streets in the city's Tenderloin neighborhood, San Francisco fire spokesperson Lt. Justin Schorr said.

When firefighters arrived within two minutes at a six-story apartment building at 500 Leavenworth St., they found a fire in a second-floor apartment with no extension to nearby apartments.

Firefighters brought the fire under control by 12:10 a.m., Schorr said. San Francisco police assisted by closing off roadways during the response.

According to a department social media post, there were no reported injuries.

Two adults and two children were displaced and referred to American Red Cross Bay Area staffers for assistance, as the unit was deemed uninhabitable.

"The family noticed the fire. They escaped and called 9-1-1. They did everything right," Schorr said. "That gave us the chance to arrive swiftly and safely, and contain this fire to where it started."

An electric scooter was involved in the fire, but firefighters were not able to determine if it was the cause of the blaze.

"Even if the scooter wasn't the cause, now that scooter is not going to be usable. The battery has been exposed to heat, so they would have to dispose of it and get another one."

George Kelly can be reached at