A new report from The Mercury News claims Oakland firefighters previously toured and attended a party in the Ghost Ship warehouse space two years before the tragic fire last December that claimed 36 lives.
According to the newspaper, the visits began September 26, 2014 after firefighters extinguished a couch fire outside the warehouse space. Firefighters later toured the space, with one calling it a "museum," and playing one of the pianos.
A resident of the space also told the newspaper that, "another firefighter told master tenant Derick Almena that as long as there were marked fire exits, they'd be OK."
Firefighters also reportedly returned twice to the space, "hanging out for hours," while a private party took place upstairs and a pig roast took place outside.
"Firefighters would have seen the clutter and a maze of small passageways carved from it on the warehouse's ground floor, a spider web of extension cords and the now-infamous makeshift staircase cobbled together from wooden pallets that led to the upstairs' performance space," the Mercury News reports. Concerns over the safety of the space were never communicated by firefighters who visited the space. Acting fire Chief Mark Hoffman said an investigation would open immediately.