Businesses Remain Closed Following Imperial China Buffet Fire
Fire investigators are still trying to figure out the cause of a massive fire that destroyed the Imperial China Buffet.
As the investigation continues, nearly a dozen businesses in the Kearsarge Plaza off of Peach Street remain closed.
Jessie Landa just opened up her store Landa Vision at the end of April.
The inside of her brand new business, is now covered with a layer of ash.
"I hope we can get our office right back where it was,” said Landa. “Everything was just new, just purchased, and so I hope we can get everything back the way it was or even a little better."
The fire also forced Erie Pack & Ship co-owner Curt Raines to temporarily close up shop.
"It’s mainly smoke damage, but it's really bad,” said Raines. “We probably got the brunt of the smoke, because we were the closest."
The fire broke out around 7:00 a.m. Tuesday, inside the Imperial China Buffet.
Investigators say it looks like the flames started in the back of the restaurant, where the kitchen is located, and eventually spread throughout the business.
Raines and the other business owners must now clean up smoke damage to their stores.
"In essence, they have to take everything out, clean it, scrub it, paint it, carpeting, and then we have to restock all of our boxes and packing materials,” said Raines. “It's not just a wipe everything down and get back to business."
Mammoth Restorations will now help each business with that process.
"Our main goal really, is just to get everybody back up and running as soon as possible,” said Michael Bennett of Mammoth Restorations. “We understand that businesses, their customer base is important, and they have livelihoods at stake."
Raines and Landa hoping to open soon.
"We appreciate all of our customers,” said Raines. “We're happy that they visited us and used us all these years. We just hope they bear with us and we'll do a grand reopening once we get all set back up again. We hope everyone comes back"