REDWOOD CITY -- A fire last month at an auto-recycling yard that spread a noxious odor across the South Bay may have been deliberately set, according to authorities.

In a Wednesday news release, Redwood City police and fire officials say the two-alarm blaze Dec. 17 at Sims Metal Management could have been the result of arson.

Officials did not release information about the exact cause of the fire because it remains under investigation.

Police and fire investigators are reviewing video footage taken from multiple locations within the Sims Metal facility in the 600 block of Seaport Boulevard, as well as video footage from other surrounding locations.

Firefighters responded to the recycling facility at 12:50 a.m. Dec. 17 following reports of an explosion and fire in a stockpile of "light iron" recyclable material.

The blaze was under control about eight hours later.

The fire resulted in several reports of a strong smell of burned plastic or metal in Santa Clara County, including one from a resident of Almaden Valley.

The blaze sparked two other fires in the area, according to the fire department.

Officials ask anyone with information about the fire to contact Detective Dave Cirina at 650-780-7607. Those wanting to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477. Those who provide information may be eligible for a cash reward from Crime Stoppers.


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Contact Mark Gomez at 408-920-5869. Follow him at Twitter.com/MarkMgomez.