afternoon November 29th, the San Bernardino County Fire Department responded to
numerous reports of a strip mall fire in the 15500 block of 7th Street in
Victorville. The first engine arrived to find heavy smoke and fire erupting
from several businesses in the middle of the strip mall.
gusting to 20 MPH quickly pushed the 3rd alarm fire into the attic of the
structure. Firefighters had to use rotary saws to gain access to the
businesses, all while being extremely cautious of the live power lines nearby.
Firefighters fought the fire from the air with ladder trucks, as well as from
all, 36 County firefighters with assistance from Apple Valley FPD, responded to
the blaze which took approximately 45 minutes to bring under control.
Bernardino County Fire Investigator Mike Ward ruled the fire as arson and
stated the fire was caused when two transients became involved in an
altercation and one lit the other's bed on fire. Both subjects fled the scene. The
bed was located to the rear of the abandoned Chinese-American restaurant.
Anyone with further information is asked to contact We-Tip at 800-47-ARSON
strip mall has occupancy for 14 businesses. Two abandoned businesses, the
Trilogy Theater and the restaurant, were completely destroyed, with
firefighters having to tear down the roof due to the threat of collapse. Two
adjacent businesses, a former night club and a current antique store, received
moderate damage. Damage is estimated at over $250,000. With an aggressive
attack, firefighters were able to save 11 adjacent businesses estimated at a
worth over $800,000. There were no injuries to firefighters or civilians.
Bernardino County Fire reminds you that it is never safe to enter a structure
where there is a suspected or confirmed fire. The best action is to safely
evacuate and then call 911 from a location outside of the burning structure. No
belongings are worth losing one’s life.