The massive five-alarm fire that raged through a Houston apartment complex captured the city's attention and put parts of Houston at a virtual standstill. After all, the billowing black smoke could be seen for miles, ash fell on cars and parts of the city seemed to descend into nightfall in the middle of the afternoon.
The images close to the fire are even more striking as these photos from the scene show. CultureMap editor-at-large Shelby Hodge and her husband Shafik Rifaat captured these closer shots at the monster blaze.
The fire was first reported around 12:30 pm at the under construction apartments. By 1:25 pm, the Houston Fire Department had upgraded it to a five-alarm blaze.
More than 70 Houston Fire Department vehicles responded to the scene.
The smoke was so thick and overpowering that it almost looked like night time near the fire.
The thick black smoke from the Montrose apartment fire could be seen for miles.
With ash drifting from the fire and landing in nearby neighborhoods, the Houston Fire Department is in a race with the clock to get the massive Montrose fire under control.
The apartments at the 2400 block of West Dallas near Montrose were controversial from the beginning with the construction site mere feet away from a near century old cemetery.
Arson investigators are already on the scene at the Montrose apartment fire, but the cause of the blaze has not been determined. Thankfully, no injuries have been reported.
Construction workers were in the building when the fire first broke out, but fire department officials believe they all got out safely.