Oceanside Pier

First responder says he'll always remember fighting the Oceanside Pier fire

Officer Cole Magro piloted a Harbor Police Firestorm boat to the pier when a fire broke out on April 25

NBC Universal, Inc.

Thousands of visitors on Memorial Day strolled along the Oceanside Pier — most of the way.

The end of the historic pier is still blocked off, and a sign says it’s a hazardous area. The buildings behind the sign and chain-linked fence are charred and will eventually be torn down.

The thought upset Port of San Diego Harbor Police Officer Cole Magro. He grew up in Oceanside, and the pier was the backdrop for much of his childhood.

“I grew up surfing the pier, so it was definitely really hard to see,” Magro said.

Magro was on duty when the fire started on April 25. He was still on duty the next day, when he was sent on one of the Harbor Police’s Firestorm boats to assist. Magro and his partner spent several hours blasting foam and water onto the fire alongside other departments.

“There are certain things in your career that you remember,” Magro said.

San Diego lifeguards returned to headquarters in Mission Bay after helping fight the Oceanside Pier fire. They shared their experiences with NBC 7's Jeanette Quezada on April 26, 2024.

Fire officials said most of the pier was saved. However, the two buildings on the end of the pier will cost roughly $17 million and take at least three years to repair.

“It's very tough to see that the end of the pier is destroyed,” sighed Magro.

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