BUSINESS

Carl’s Jr. Catches Fire While Serving Firemen In California

Jody Ray Bennett
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Jody Ray Bennett
Carl’s Jr. Catches Fire While Serving Firemen In California

The Carl’s Jr. on Industrial Drive in Santa Rose was destroyed by an internal kitchen fire. It was one location that was used to help feed first responders in California’s raging wildfires.

According to the Press Democrat, “While in the midst of preparing 165 Super Star with cheese double burgers for first responders in the Fountaingrove area, a kitchen fire damaged the fast-food restaurant. The kitchen crew was halfway through filling the large order when a grease fire ignited in the charbroiler and jumped into the exhaust system just after 11 a.m.”

The franchise co-owner, Greg Funkhouser, told reporters that the charbroilers are of high temperature and there was a lot of meat going through them at the time. The charbroilers reach more than 700 degrees.

Funkhouser said his building was “completely torn up. They chainsawed big holes into the roof.” Bystanders said a citizen reported flames coming from the roof, and others helped evacuate the people inside. The fire in the kitchen hood system and ventilation fan then spread to wood in the attic.

According to reports, the Santa Rosa Fire Department controlled the fire in 15 minutes. Damage was estimated at $75,000. All six employees inside of the building escaped unharmed.

The Democrat also reported that the fire “destroyed a Kmart, Arby’s and other businesses in the area around Carl’s Jr. at 3640 Industrial Drive between Highway 101 and Coffey Park.”

California has begun a historic cleanup from the recent wave of wildfires, but faces serious hurdles in rebuilding many areas of the state.

Moody's Investors Service estimates insured losses for property and casualty companies in the conflagration could be more than $4.6 billion.

Sonoma was the hardest hit county in this month's wildfires “with some 6,800 homes lost. Another 569 homes in Napa County were destroyed. The two wine country counties each lost at least 5 percent of their housing stock, according to estimates.”

Santa Rosa, Sonoma County's largest city, where the Carl’s Jr. was located, “lost entire neighborhoods, including the suburb of Coffey Park and mobile home parks.”