The menu at the Hakka Express restaurant at the Shoppes of Maraval will be slightly overcooked for a while, since a grease fire ignited in the kitchen yesterday.
While no one was harmed in the blaze, the restaurant will have to be closed until repairs are made, displacing a total of eight staff members who worked at the restaurant.
Sources told Newsday at about 2.45 pm yesterday, workers in the kitchen were cooking when the fire on one of the stoves flared up. The flare was so high that the fire spread to another stove which had oil at its top. This caused a chain reaction which set the entire kitchen ablaze.
Kitchen workers ran out and alerted staff and customers of the restaurant that a fire had ignited.
Jerome Samaroo, one of the cooks in the kitchen at the time told Newsday that the fire was contained by himself and another worker in the kitchen.
“We knew we could not use water to douse the fire, but we had fire extinguishers, so we used that to control the fire until the fire officers could arrive.” Samaroo said.
While the two kitchen workers were trying to contain the blaze, the maintenance officers of the compound alerted the fire services, who arrived in a matter of minutes. Maintenance officers also alerted and evacuated a total of one hundred patrons and members of staff from the compound and had them gather at a nearby muster point.
Fire officers took over and doused the fire. However, Newsday was told, had the kitchen workers not intervened and tried to control the fire, the damage could have been much worse.
The restaurant suffered damage to its walls, kitchen equipment, tools and some electrical wires. None of the other restaurants at the compound suffered any serious damage.
Fire prevention officers are investigating to confirm the cause and nature of the fire.