NEW ORLEANS - The New Orleans Fire Department says a 5-alarm fire has as many as 17 people looking for a new place to stay.
The fire started at about 5:20 in the morning on March 25 in the 1800 block of Baronne Street.
According to the NOFD, the fire started in a vacant camelback house, possibly by a vagrant who was trying to stay warm.
The flames spread to a two story building next door. According to the owner of the second building, it had been recently renovated and was divided into five one-bedroom apartments.
One of the tenants was a Loyola Law School student named Kamal Packer. Packer told WGNO that his bulldog Buster helped get him out of the building and saved his life.
“But he just kept running up and through the apartment as if he was kinda terrified. And so I looked over, I rolled over on the couch. I told him to be quiet, heck knock it off, I’m trying to sleep.” Packer said.
Moments later, Packer decided to see what had Buster so agitated.
“And I looked at the window, and I could see this orange reflection coming through from the window,” Packer said. “And I pulled the curtains open. And sure enough, the whole camel back of the house next door was just burning in flames.”
The NOFD says some people were trapped on balconies and could not escape the flames.
“There were people trapped on the right hand side in what we call the delta building to the immediate right of the fire building,” Superintendent Tim McConnell said. “They pulled three people from the balcony there and another individual from the back of one of the structures.”
The NOFD says nobody was hurt in the fire.