A fast-moving fire destroyed a second-floor apartment unit Friday in Redwood City and damaged at least three other units, according to authorities.

The blaze started just before 4 p.m. in a six-unit building at 635 Laurel St., across from the Fair Oaks Children's Clinic and Hoover Community School.

The Redwood City Fire Department and Menlo Park Fire Protection District responded to the blaze and extinguished it, Redwood City fire Battalion Chief Daniel Abrams said.

The cause of the fire was not immediately evident, but it quickly spread through a studio apartment on the second floor, said Menlo Park Battalion Chief Ben Marra.

"The fire was in one apartment but it spread into the attic so we had to get into the unit next to it and open the ceilings up," Marra said. "There are about three, four units that are damaged."

By the time firefighters arrived, it appeared that all of the residents had evacuated, Marra said. There were no reported injuries.

Maurice Robinson and his girlfriend live in one of the building's two ground-floor front units, which were not damaged by the fire. Robinson was at home with two of their four kids when he was alerted to the fire by a banging noise.

"Some lady came and was beating on all the doors. So I opened it to see what was going on and she yelled, 'Fire in the back!', so we all got out," Robinson said. "She was some random lady and she disappeared."


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A single woman lived in the apartment where the fire reportedly started, Robinson said.

The woman returned home after the fire had been put out and declined an interview request.

Email Bonnie Eslinger at beslinger@dailynewsgroup.com; follow her at twitter.com/bonnieeslinger.