Late night fire destroys Los Osos greenhouses

Four businesses damaged in blaze

Los Osos greenhouse fire

LOS OSOS, Calif. - Firefighters battled a late night fire Wednesday that burned several greenhouse businesses in Los Osos. 

At 10:53 p.m., Cal Fire received a report of a fire burning at a structure on Sage Ave. Within minutes, crews from Cal Fire South Bay Fire Station 15 arrived on the scene to find four greenhouses in flames.

"Arriving units reported heavy smoke and fire from two greenhouses," said Cal Fire Battalion Chief Josh Taylor. "And two involved with exposures  from both east and west."

According to Taylor, firefighters had a water supply issue to deal with, which challenged the initial response. 

"We had to bring in water from a fire hydrant system on South Bay Blvd. and Nipomo Ave.," said  Taylor.

One of the greenhouses contained a floral operation, while the other three have been converted into other non-nursery related businesses. 

The greenhouses are located next to many homes along Sage Ave. However, no evacuations were placed during the response.

In addition, the structures are located adjacent to an empty field with vegetation, causing concern for neighbors during the first few minutes of the blaze.

"It was very scary," said Patti James, who lives nearby the greenhouses."I was in my pajamas when my neighbor called. I got out of my pajamas and into my clothes. I grabbed my guy and my dog and said we're taking the good car down there in case that fire is coming this way because that's the first thing my neighbor said was it could be coming your way."

Crews kept the flames from spreading to the nearby field, providing relief to James, who watched firefighters put out the blaze.

"I'm very grateful," said James. "That's one of the reasons I came down to make sure the firefighters knew that we had a house out there and they stopped it here and didn't let it get out to the grass." 

Firefighters were able to contain the fire in less than two hours. South Bay Blvd. was closed for several hours during the response.

However, they were not able to save "A Grand Entrance," Bill Alvarado's custom door business.

"I don't know where to go from here," says Alvarado, who has worked out of this location with his son for more than five years. "It was fully involved when I got here. But the response I have gotten from people has been overwhelming. I have been getting texts and calls all day from builders, architects and clients."

A GoFundMe account is being set up to help the business. 

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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