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Published: Wednesday, July 03, 2019 @ 8:21 PM
Updated: Thursday, July 04, 2019 @ 1:00 AM
BROOKVILLE — The fire at K’s Restaurant in Brookville Wednesday night caused “significant damage” Brookville Fire Chief Ron Fletcher said, and “it will be some time before they open back up here again.”
Fire heavily damaged the kitchen and half the dining room of the family-style restaurant at 485 Arlington Road, which has been in the Brookville community for 40 years.
None of the 20 or so patrons was injured in the evacuation. Some were even trying to box up their food to go, Chief Fletcher said. A couple of firefighters were evaluated for heat-related issues. None of the staff was injured.
Hannah Hogg and her family were among the patrons who had to evacuate.
“It was pretty tragic, what’s happened tonight,” the Eaton resident said. “It was probably one of the best restaurants in Brookville because of the family style of eating,” and she said that’s really important to her family.
“I really hope she rebuilds and reopens. It was just a close-knit family,” Hogg said.
K’s Restaurant was the former Brookville National Bank, which was purchased and converted into the restaurant in 2005.
A banquet facility was added during the conversion. A church congregation uses the banquet room for Sunday services and Bible study on Wednesdays.
Fletcher said crews were dispatched just after 8 p.m. on a report of smoke in the kitchen. Crews found smoke pushing from an attic vent. They found flames in a gable vent.
The cause has not been determined, the chief said, but he and investigators are looking at the attic space above the kitchen, at the duct system that carries grease-laiden vapors out of the building and the electric. Those are the most common causes of fires in commercial structures such as restaurants, he said.
A house fire nearby in Clayton complicated the issue at K’s because many of his firefighters were there. But, Fletcher said, the mutual aid agreement among area fire departments was instrumental in getting crews to K’s from New Lebanon, Vandalia, Englewood, Trotwood and Lewisburg to help Brookville.