NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A massive fire broke out Monday morning at a 7th Ward nightclub.
The fire happened around 3 a.m. at Club Fusions, located in the 2000 block of A.P. Tureaud Ave. The fire happened just five blocks from St. Augustine High School.
The club was closed for the night when the fire broke out, according to the New Orleans Fire Department. Crews arrived on the scene within four minutes of the initial report.
"Initially got folks in there with a line trying to make an attack but eventually it flashed over on them, they were forced to retreat from the building, everyone did get out, but the building is going to be a total loss," NOFD Supt. Tim McConnell said.
To fight the fire, firefighters used aerial units to pour water down into the structure as the building's roof and structural members gave way to the intensity of the flames, according to the NOFD. Due to the instability of the structure, fire crews sat the streets bordering the building will remain closed at their intersections until the collapse threat has been mitigated.
Firefighters say the building is a "total loss." Neighboring businesses were not injured in the blaze.
The fire is devastating for the people who've made years of memories inside the club, known for its support of the LGBT community.
"To see our home like this, a lot of people called this home, where we feel comfortable, we can be ourselves here, a lot of people gotta hide being gay," Lateasha Clark, who's visited the club since she was 18, said.
"This bar has history, way long ago before Katrina and everything, so everyone knows about this spot, and the alternative lifestyle people, this is where they hang out so they have to find a new place to go," one man said, who did not want to give his full name.
Drivers say flames could be seen from I-10 around 3:45 a.m. Monday morning.
No one was injured in the fire and investigators have yet to pinpoint a cause.