09242017Headline:

Six Alarm Canal Street fire Written by: Meghan Henoumont

Six Alarm Canal Street fire
Written by: Meghan Henoumont

The central business district (CBD) got off to a smoke-filled start this morning due to a fire that erupted around 3:30 a.m. on the 1000 block of Canal Street. The New Orleans Fire Department (NOFD) battled the now six-alarm blaze for six hours but as of 10 a.m., fire fighters have left the building due to the threat of the structure collapsing.
Fire Superintendent Tim McConnell said at an 8:30 a.m. news conference that firefighters are unable to mount an interior attack in the building because of a cracked wall. McConnell said he expects NOFD to be on the scene for at least 24 hours.
Thick smoke has diminished visibility and air quality, causing nearby office buildings to close as police shut down the Canal streetcar line and both sides of Canal Street from Rampart to Burgundy Street to all traffic until further notice.
The fire began at approximately 3:26 a.m., in a four-story commercial structure which intensified rapidly, spreading to surrounding building around 4:30 a.m. By 8 a.m. the fire was upgraded to a six-alarm fire that remains active and highly dangerous.

Heavy smoke obscures the view from the Exchange building in the CBD.

Heavy smoke obscures the view from the Exchange Center in the CBD. Photo by: Meghan Henoumont

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