YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

1,500 Evacuated in Disney Hotel Fire Near Paris; 4 Are Hospitalized

September 08, 1996|From Associated Press

PARIS — Fire heavily damaged portions of a sprawling hotel at Disneyland Paris early Saturday, forcing 1,500 guests to flee, some with little more than the pajamas on their backs.

Nine people complained of smoke inhalation, and four of them, including two pregnant women, were hospitalized for observation, said Disney spokeswoman Annie Jan.

The blaze broke out at 6:45 a.m. at the 1,000-room Sequoia Lodge, said Disney spokesman Mark Webb. Firefighters extinguished the fire three hours later.

Most of the 1,500 guests were already awake, getting ready for the park's 8 a.m. opening, Jan said. "They were evacuated in less than 20 minutes."

But about 100 of them, awakened by the blaze, were forced to flee with little more than their nightclothes. They were given a shopping spree in the park's shops to outfit themselves, with Mickey paying.

Authorities were trying to determine what caused the fire that gutted much of the roof and damaged dozens of rooms, Webb said. The extent of the damage, from the blaze and from the water used to put it out, was still being assessed.

The hundreds of displaced guests were given new lodgings at some of the five other hotels surrounding the theme park, as well as at other hotels in the area, Jan said.

Euro Disney, which owns the theme park and hotels 18 miles east of Paris, said last week that it expects higher profits this year. It turned its first profit last year.

Euro Disney is 39%-owned by its U.S.-based parent, Walt Disney Co.

Los Angeles Times Articles