Video: 5 Jump To Their Death To Escape NOLA High Rise Fire – From 1972

by • February 5, 2014 • Central Business DistrictComments (3)25639


Over four decades ago, a downtown high-rise known as the Rault Center caught on fire, forcing several trapped inside to attempt to jump to safety from 15 floors up.  Most died.

On November 29, 1972, flames tore through the Rault Center in downtown New Orleans. On the 15th floor was a beauty salon where five women were trapped inside. New Orleanians watched on live TV as those five women jumped out of the burning downtown building.

It’s heart wrenching and if you watch it you may not be able to sleep for a few nights.

The fire resulted in 6 fatalities.  One was a result of smoke inhalation and five were the result of jumping from the 15th floor to escape the inferno.

The Rault Center fire changed state law requiring high-rise buildings to have sprinklers.

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3 Responses to Video: 5 Jump To Their Death To Escape NOLA High Rise Fire – From 1972

  1. Cherie says:

    I spoke with a lady who was offered a job in this beauty salon only a day before by her friend who owned the salon. She turned down the job because her husband was a fireman and she could see that there were no sprinklers in the building. She had heard that there was a bomb threat in the building and didn’t want her friend to work that day. She was watching t.v. when she saw her friend jump to her death. She just told me this story a few hours ago and I remembered the incident and found this online. It was so sad to her tell of watching her friend die when she was already concerned that the building had no sprinklers. She is still hurting today and it broke her heart again as she was telling me the story.

  2. […] The site is the former Rault Center, which is the same building where several died in 1972 when a deadly fire tore through the building. Several others jumped to their deaths from the 15th floor.  It was caught on film, which you can view here. […]

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