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Photographer's Note

Sunday was a beautiful day, a bit on the cool side and breezy but with a crisp and clear sky with a few lazy fair weather clouds hanging around. It was a perfect autumn afternoon to spend the day outside. So what better day to go see a few friends.

But when I got outside I saw a dark cloud in the sky and thought how photogenic. But quickly I realized it was not a cloud at all, not a natural cloud anyway. Only a fire could be producing such darkness. So I ran back up to my room to have a better view and this is the view I saw. I estimated it to be about 3 miles away.

So now my plans had changed. I grabbed the camera, got in the car and headed east, into Detroit. As I got onto Ford Rd. to head in the direction of the fire my view became more clear. And the closer I got to it the more it looked like a volcano spilling out ash.

By that point I had an idea of exactly where the fire was and as I got onto Livernois, a wide old once industrial street, I saw I was right. It was an old factory/warehouse in the middle of one of Detroit's old working class neighborhoods filled with tightly spaced homes. At one time it may have been an auto parts supplier that had long ago left and had been converted into a warehouse and auto chop shop. From only a few blocks away it looked apocalyptic behind the businesses on Livernois.

It was the third large fire to burn in Metro Detroit since summer. The first was the former Studebaker Factory which ended up a pile of debris, being a pre-concrete, wood-framed, building. And the second was a chemical factory near Metro-Airport which forced a large evacuation of that neighborhood.

So for the next few hours I joined a crowd of a few hundred watching the fire and the efforts of the Detroit Fire Department to put it out. It was a stubborn fire spread by the stiff wind but the fire crews once again proved their worth as they saved several homes and buildings that directly touched the property of the fire.

I will probably slowly post some views of this fire over time but decided to start with this view of the inferno taken in the evening, a couple hours after I arrived, from the northwest side. It was opposite the focus of most of the fire crews and where one could get closest to the building. So close that I became hot in my jacket as it was like standing in front of a huge fireplace.

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Additional Photos by Paul Mastrogiacomo (pamastro) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2679 W: 164 N: 2696] (7296)
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