Fire and smoke heavily damaged an East Charleston Boulevard lounge early Saturday morning. Fire investigators believe the fire was accidental, but an exact cause could not be determined. One person was treated on scene for smoke inhalation.
Fire dispatchers received a call at 6:04 a.m. that smoke was coming from an air conditioning unit at the Back Door Lounge, 1415 E. Charleston Blvd. When firefighters arrived, thick black smoke was coming from the roof of a one-story concrete block building.
Firefighters found the fire in a small storage room on the rear of the building. They had the fire out within a few minutes.
The fire gutted the storage room, the place where the fire originated. The rest of the building had heavy smoke damage. Damage was estimated at $100,000.
Fire investigators could not determine the exact reason the fire started, but it appeared to be accidental in nature. They could not rule out either careless smoking or an electrical problem. The lounge had substandard wiring along with extended use of extension cords and overloaded outlets. Smoking material was found all around the business.
There were three people in the lounge when the fire started. It appeared one of the people may have used a fire extinguisher in an attempt to put the fire out. One person was treated on scene for smoke inhalation. They refused to go to the hospital.
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