February 1, 2013

Rain causes fire at Krystal

By Nita Johnson
Staff Writer

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — A leak in the roof of a local restaurant is believed to have sparked an electrical fire on Wednesday night.

Four employees on duty just before 8 p.m. huddled under an umbrella-covered table outside the Krystal restaurant on Ky. 192  while members of the London Fire Department checked the building.

Melissa Smallwood, general manager, was with her husband who is a member of the fire department when the call came over his radio. The two rushed to the scene.

Smallwood said a leak in the roof — probably caused by the heavy rainfall of recent days — may have sparked the fire that began on a baluster in the back office area of the restaurant. Employees immediately contacted 9-1-1 when flames were spotted coming from the area.

Smallwood said the leak was immediately above the lights and sparks could be seen coming from the electrical wires.

Four employees were inside the building when the fire was spotted. One customer was in the drive-thru area and family of four were finishing their meal when the fire department was called.

Smallwood said the breaker to one area of the restaurant was shut off following the fire.

“There was no power in the bathrooms or the back office,” Smallwood said. “There was a family in here when the fire started but they left. No one was hurt.”

The call of a fire at the local eatery was a concern for several of London Fire Department’s members. Besides Smallwood’s husband being part of the firefighting team, two other Krystal employees also have fathers who serve on both the city fire department and the London-Laurel County Rescue Squad.

Despite the scare, Smallwood said the restaurant remained open for business on Wednesday night, only without power to the public bathrooms and back office area.

“We don’t have power back there but we’re still open,” she said.