Firefighters work four-alarm blaze in 7th Ward


Posted on March 31, 2013 at 5:32 PM

Updated Sunday, Mar 31 at 10:54 PM
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NEW ORLEANS -- New Orleans firefighters were called to the scene of a four-alarm blaze Sunday in the 7th Ward.

The fire happened at a home near the intersection of N. Villere Street and Esplanade Avenue at about 5 p.m.
The three-story structure had been converted into a five unit apartment building.  Firefighters tried to fight the fire from inside the building but were forced out. 
"First crews here made an aggressive attack. Got into that front attic where they made that first fire. It was on that Esplanade side. They were hitting it pretty good, then it broke through the roof, so command pulled them out," said NOFD Deputy Superintendent Tim McConnell.
Firefighters then began fighting the fire from the outside while making sure the fire did not spread to surrounding buildings.
The owner of the building told WWLTV, off camera, that the building was built in the 1800's.  Many of the surrounding building are just as old.
Fire officials say 82 firefighters responded to the fire.  The fire was brought under control at 7p.m. 
The Red Cross was on the scene to assist eight residents who were displaced by the fire. Rickey Fox, a local artist, lives in the building and returned home from work to find his apartment destroyed.  
"If I can go in, I'll find what isn't there. Everything...all my belongings are in there," Fox said.
Fire officials say there were no reports of injuries.  Firefighters say the fire started in the wall near the front porch.  The cause of the fire is under investigation.