March 27, 2017 / 2:58 PM / 3 years ago

At least three dead in fire at Oakland residential building

(This March 27 story was corrected to show in headline that at least three people were killed, not two)

Firefighters battle a four-alarm blaze in a three-story apartment building in Oakland, California, U.S. March 27, 2017. REUTERS/Beck Diefenbach

(Reuters) - At least three people died in a four-alarm fire that swept through a residential building in Oakland, California, on Monday, officials said.

The fire broke out at about 6 a.m. local time, ravaging a building that media said had been the target of safety complaints.

One of the dead was identified as Edwarn Anderson, 64, said Deputy S. Sobrero, a spokesman for the Alameda County Coroner’s office. He did not release the identity of the other victims.

The Alameda County Sheriff’s Office said on Twitter three people were killed in the fire and a fourth person was missing.

Firefighters said earlier on Twitter that crews were being withdrawn from the building after the roof and some floors were “compromised.”

Video footage on local media showed smoke billowing into the sky from the building as firefighters poured water onto the flames.

Firefighters rescued at least seven people from the blaze, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. The newspaper said the building on San Pablo Avenue was leased by agencies running housing and social service programs.

It reported that numerous complaints had been lodged against the building for safety and sanitation problems, citing city records.

Last December, 36 people were killed when a fire erupted at a dance party at a sprawling, two-story warehouse in Oakland known as the Ghost Ship that had been leased to an artists’ collective.

It was the deadliest blaze in the United States since 100 people perished in a 2003 nightclub fire in Rhode Island.

Reporting by Dan Whitcomb in Los Angeles and Tom James in Seattle; Additional reporting by Sharon Bernstein in Sacramento, California and Brendan O'Brien in Milwaukee; Editing by Bernard Orr and Paul Tait

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