SFFD says fatal fire appears accidental 

A small apartment fire in the Bernal Heights area claimed the life of a woman Monday, but Lt. Ken Smith of the San Francisco Fire Department does not believe the quickly contained blaze was started under any suspicious circumstances.

A passer-by reported the one-alarm fire at the "flat" eight-unit apartment building located at 225 Cortland Ave. at 5:46 p.m. Within a few minutes, firefighters arrived at the scene and snuffed the flames by 5:59 p.m. Nearly 30 firefighters completely contained the blaze, which didn’t spread beyond the woman’s apartment, at 6:11 p.m.

The deceased woman was described by residents of the neighborhood as elderly, Smith said, though he could not easily identify her age. She is believed to have lived alone at the apartment.

"She was already deceased when firefighters got there and medical examiners will be identifying her in the next few days," Smith said.

Surrounding units suffered only water damage and most of the building’s residents were allowed to return to their homes that night.

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