At 5:12 a.m. on April 18, 1906, the residents of San Francisco awoke with a start as a massive temblor ripped along the San Andreas fault. The shifting earth turned liquid, and buildings shook from their foundations. Subterranean gas pipes fractured and fueled fires that in the following 3 days would consume more than 10 square kilometers of the city. The blazes couldn't be extinguished because the city's water pipes had been fractured too.
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