WASHINGTON CITY – A small, short-lived roof fire resulted in a restaurant closing early Tuesday after smoke filled the inside and staff and patrons cleared out.
The Washington City Fire Department responded to the report of a possible structure fire at Don Pedro’s Family Mexican Restaurant, 1004 W. Red Cliffs Drive, just after 5 p.m.
Prior to the firefighters arrival, Don Pedro’s manager, Jose Rivera, said staff began to notice smoke coming out of ceiling vents. At the same time, a crew of roofers was in the process of re-roofing the building.
Believing something from the rooftop work might have started the fire, such as sparks from cutting materials for example, Rivera went outside and tried to get the roofers’ attention. He was initially unable to get the roofers to notice him due to a compressor drowning out this voice, but he was soon got a hold of one of them.
Rivera told the roofer about the smoke and handed him an extinguisher for the suspected fire.
“That’s when the smoke starting coming out more and we took everybody out of the restaurant,” Rivera said.
The roofers found a small fire under a part of the roof they had patched and put it out with the extinguisher, Washington City Firefighter Preston Jolley said. The fire was mostly out by the time firefighters arrived, though parts of insulation were still smoldering while light smoke was seen coming out of the building.
Smoke from the fire filled the area between the ceiling and the drop-ceiling in the restaurant, Jolley said.
“There was a lot of smoke,” Rivera said. “The whole kitchen got covered. It just smells really bad.”
While the fire was extinguished and smoldering materials were also put out and removed, the restaurant sustained some smoke damage and had to close for the day.
No one was harmed in the incident and smoke remained contained to the Don Pedro’s portion of a building shared with a Sherwin Williams paint store next door, Jolley said.
Firefighters cleared the area by 7 p.m.
Washington City Police and Gold Cross Ambulance also responded to the call.
This report is based on statements from emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.
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