Early Saturday morning, a four-alarm fire broke out on Pier 45 on San Francisco’s Embarcadero. The cause of the fire is still unknown, but the devastation wrought on the fishing and crabbing industry, which was already suffering from the pandemic, cannot be overstated. The warehouse stored some $9 million worth of fishing gear, according to KQED News; about 30 crabbers and fisherman lost up to $300,000 each in equipment.
According to KQED, the Port of San Francisco requires tenants to have insurance. “As of Sunday, the San Francisco Crab Boat Owners Association said it was unsure how much of the equipment loss insurance would cover — if any at all.”
“The business of crabbing is an inextricable part of what San Francisco is. It’s part of our reputation and our economy,” San Francisco Supervisor Aaron Peskin, who represents Fisherman’s Wharf, was quoted as saying by KQED. “We’ve got a little bit of time between now and November to figure this thing out, but if it’s a philanthropic campaign or assistance, we need to get the crabbers back on their feet.”
“Pier 45 is the heart and soul of commercial fishing out of the Bay Area,” Larry ‘Diver Duck’ Collins, the head of the San Francisco Community Fishing Association, told the San Francisco Chronicle. “To take a hit like this, it’s a bad one. Most people don’t think about where their salmon, crab or black cod come from, but that’s where: It’s Pier 45.”