OAKLAND -- A two-story vintage Victorian in West Oakland was still leaning precariously on Friday after keeling over the previous evening against an adjacent house.

The pre-1900 Victorian home was being renovated in the 2400 block of Myrtle Street when it partly collapsed Thursday night, causing no injuries, according to fire officials.

William Davis, who lives in a house that is now propping up the Victorian, said Friday that the experience, "was pretty scary. I thought it was an earthquake."

His Toyota camper remained covered by debris in his driveway and he was trying to get assistance from his insurance company and city officials about getting it out and determining who was going to clean up the fallen house.

Fire crews were called about 8:25 p.m. to the site, a half-block from McClymonds High School. Crews found the restoration project in a precarious state.

"It had not been shorn up properly, and part of it is now leaning on the building next door," said Oakland fire Battalion Chief Coy Justice. "They will not be able to restore what's left of it."

He said when it fell, no one was in the building being renovated, and occupants of the neighboring house were unharmed. That building did not sustain any significant damage.

Justice said the party attempting the restoration will have to apply for a demolition permit to raze the structure. He said the cause of the collapse was not immediately evident.


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"I don't know, maybe they took out one two-by-four too many," he said.

Davis said he only saw construction workers earlier in the week at another vacant Victorian on the north side of the one that fell but did not know who they were working for.

There were no signs on either property indicating who was doing the renovations. It was not immediately determined who owned the house that collapsed.

According to the Zillow real estate website, the home is a six-bedroom, two-bathroom Victorian built in 1892, about 2,200 square feet with the home and lot valued at just under $400,000.

Contact Eric Kurhi at 408-920-5852. Follow him at Twitter.com/erickurhi.