Archive for Thursday, January 8, 2004

Blaze fries McDonald’s

January 8, 2004

Ronald McDonald was scheduled to visit the McDonald's fast food restaurant in Bonner Springs after a renovation project was finished.

His visit will have to wait.

On Tuesday, Dec. 30, a fire destroyed the McDonald's restaurant at Kansas Highway 7 and Kansas Avenue causing an estimated $800,000 in damage. The exact cause of the fire is still under investigation, but Chief Warren Hanks of the Bonner Springs Fire Department said the blaze is believed to have originated in the roof and attic area.

Patrick Manning, a marketing manager for Dobski's and Associates McDonald's, said another restaurant will be built at the location.

"We plan to build a bigger and better restaurant at the same spot," Manning said. "It's a very busy store and we know the community certainly enjoyed it."

The restaurant, which averaged enough business to rank in the top half of McDonald's restaurants in the Kansas City, Kan., area, was approaching its 20th anniversary in Bonner Springs. It opened Dec. 20, 1984.

Manning said a new, rebuilt restaurant could be completed by June or July if plans fall into place.

Firefighters from the Bonner Springs, Fairmount Township and Kansas City, Kan., fire departments were dispatched at approximately 8:02 p.m. Tuesday.

Bonner Springs firefighters were committed to the scene of another fire approximately six miles to the southwest when the McDonald's fire was reported.

When learning of the structure fire, firefighters were sent to McDonald's, arriving at approximately 8:05 p.m.

On the scene, firefighters observed heavy fire in the attic and roof of the one-story building.

Hanks said the fire is believed to have originated on the north end of the restaurant's roof.

The fire chief reported crews from Marlan Construction of Lawrence, the company handling the restaurant's renovation, had done hot tar roof work and welding earlier that day.

Manning said the company has done two previous renovation jobs for McDonald's and that it's too early to place blame for the fire.

"They've done two other renovations for us and have always done an outstanding job," Manning said.

The first suppression unit from Bonner Springs arrived at approximately 8:13 p.m. and stream operations began after securing a water supply.

Hanks reported the initial attack on the fire was slowed by a fire hydrant that wasn't functioning properly.

Hanks reported the fire to be under control by 9:51 p.m. Crews remained on the scene for an additional three hours to control hot spots, Hanks said.

Customers and employees were in the building when the fire began but were unharmed by the blaze.

One firefighter sustained a minor injury.

Renovation to the restaurant began in November and was slated for completion by February. The remodeling included adding more seating to the dining area, a new indoor play area and a new double drive-through system.

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