Fire Damages Apple R&D Building

A building housing research and development programs at Apple caught fire last night, producing thick black smoke due to the composition of the roof. In the end, it was the sprinkler systems that did the most damage to the building itself.

The Santa Clara County fire department responded to a call shortly after 10 p.m. on Tuesday night from construction workers who had been working on the roof, according to Daron Pisciotta, a fire captain with the SCCFD.

Units were called in from Santa Clara County, as well as nearby San Jose, Saratoga and Los Altos. No one was injured in the fire, which occurred outside of the main campus, famously known as 1 Infinite Loop. The fire was in building Valley Green Six, just across the street at 20705 Valley Green Dr.

Captain Pisciotta said the fire at this point looks accidental. “The first units to arrive were directed to the roof by construction workers who were doing something on the HVAC system at night so the building wouldn’t overheat,” he said.

The fire was contained to the roof and attic of the building. The black smoke, which could be seen in several nearby cities, was likely caused by the materials used to construct the roof, such as tar and gravel.

The biggest damage was water and smoke damage inside the building. As the sprinkler system went off, water flooded the second floor and then flowed down to the first, according to Pisciotta.

Valley Green Six is believed to house iTunes Store and research and development staff. Apple has not commented on the fire.

With no serious damage or human injuries, the fire made for some Web humor. “I bet the fire department had to sign NDAs before entering” wrote one person on CrunchGear. The joke echoed among many sites in a crack on Apple’s highly secretive nature.

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