Clean-up under way at Lassen Ale Works
|A Tuesday, Dec. 11 fire, damaged the ceiling in the kitchen at Lassen Ale Works at the Pioneer Saloon and charred some floor joists to the upstairs apartment. Photos by Ruth Ellis|
|A fire that reportedly started in the kitchen at the Lassen Ale Works the Pioneer Saloon left the front and back rooms untouched. According to Margaret Liddiard, one of four owners of the ale house, there was no smoke damage to the walls or the mural featuring brands in Lassen County.|
Wednesday, Dec. 12 — Employees of Lassen Ale Works at the Pioneer Saloon began arriving early this morning, Wednesday, Dec. 12, asking how they could help after a fire caused substantial damage to the kitchen last evening.
According to Margaret Liddiard, one of the four owners of the ale house, when she and business partner Erik Jefferts arrived around 8-8:30 a.m. employees had already arrived and people were spontaneously showing up to help throughout the day.
This afternoon, a crew of employees was cleaning-up and making repairs.
Liddiard said the plan is to re-open the bar as quickly as possible.
Two insurance agents stopped by, and Jeff Morrish, a civil engineer with NST Engineering, visited the ale house to determine what repairs need to be done to the building.
According to Morrish, several of the floor joists above the kitchen were charred and will have to be replaced, as will the exhaust hood, the duct chase and some wall studs in the upstairs apartment.
He said there was some minor damage to the walls and ceiling that will have to be sheet-rocked and painted in both the kitchen and apartment.
At approximately 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, a reported structure fire in the kitchen at the ale house had firefighters and law enforcement agencies racing to the scene at 724 Main St.
According to a press release from the Susanville Fire Department (SFD), the cause of the fire is pending.
Liddiard said a pipe had burst in one of the upstairs apartments about an hour before the fire started, and water had been turned off to that area.
However, water got into the hood vent and went down into the deep fat fryers. The dining hall and residents in the apartments were evacuated. No one was injured.
The second story contained four apartments, one apartment and it’s contents sustained moderate damage.
A family with two children and two other adults were displaced and Red Cross was called in to assist them.
According to Sophia Wages, Red Cross Lassen County disaster manager, the Red Cross provides housing for a maximum three days and food and clothing for a week.
Ted Friedline, Susanville’s fire chief, said there was no fire in the basement where Lassen Ale Works’ storage tanks are located, but there was active fire at the east wall and the first and second floor.
Walking through the front and back rooms on the first floor of La
ssen Ale Works, it might be difficult to believe a fire had even occurred.
According to Morrish, they were very fortunate because there was very little smoke damage, and he explained the fire burned up the chase through the duct and out the building.
Flames were visible for a while as they burned out of the structure of the hood exit.
Liddiard said there was no smoke damage to the walls or the mural featuring the cattle brands in Lassen County located on the wall above the bar. The office and computer system are also unharmed.
“Everything is well,” Liddiard said. “It could have been worse.”
According to a press release from the SFD, the department responded to the incident with automatic aid from the Susan River Fire Protection District.
On arrival of the first-in engine company, smoke was seen coming from the roof as well as inside the business. Firefighters performed an aggressive fire attack.
The fire was contained at approximately 8:30 p.m. Salvage and overhaul operations were also performed. The Janesville Fire and Standish/Litchfield Fire Districts also responded as mutual aid.
According to the press release, the official cause of the fire is pending.
The Susanville Police Department, Lassen County Sheriff’s Office, Lassen Municipal Utility District, City of Susanville Public Works, the Red Cross and the Lassen County Office of Emergency Services also assisted in the incident.
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