Leadership

Delayed Alarm at Church Fire Leads to $13 Million Conflagration

Issue 8 and Volume 135.

Delayed Alarm at Church Fire Leads to $13 Million Conflagration features New Bedford Standard-Times photo by Hank Seaman Workmen soldering gutters during restoration of an 86-year-old church in Fall River, Mass., are believed to have started a $13 million conflagration that left perhaps 300 persons homeless. Fire fighters from 38 communities battled the blaze, first in the Notre Dame de Lourdes church with its 235foot twin spires and then as it spread to 33 other buildings. Some homes in the area are only 2 or 3 feet apart. The workmen tried to use portable extinguishers when the fire was first discovered, according to newspaper reports, but thick smoke prevented them from entering the area. By the time the Fall River Fire Department received the alarm at 2:25 p.m., May 11, and arrived at 2:27, smoke was also thick in the street. Neighbors later reported seeing smoke as early as 2:00.…

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