Fire breaks out at Monte Carlo resort on Las Vegas Strip - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Fire breaks out at Monte Carlo resort on Las Vegas Strip

LAS VEGAS (AP) - A fire broke out Friday at the Monte Carlo hotel-casino, forcing guests and gamblers to evacuate and shooting plumes of black smoke above the Las Vegas Strip.

The fire, which was reported around 11 a.m., spread from the center section of the hotel across the roof before appearing to ease about an hour later. Fiery debris fell to the street below, and orange flames lapped at the casino's script sign.

"The building is being evacuated," said Gordon Absher, spokesman for the hotel owner, MGM Mirage Inc.

Investigators were trying to determine if the blaze had penetrated the building's top floors, which are filled with luxury suites, or if the fire was confined to the facade.

There were no immediate reports of injuries, according to an ambulance dispatcher.

Huge crowds formed to watch the fire, and traffic on the Las Vegas Strip was gridlocked as streets were blocked off around the hotel.

The Monte Carlo Resort & Casino has more than 3,000 guest rooms and opened in June 1996.

The 32-story casino-hotel modeled after the Place du Casino in Monte Carlo, Monaco, was a joint venture between Steve Wynn's Mirage Resorts and Circus Circus Enterprises.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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