WENTZVILLE, Mo. (KMOV) – More than 60 firefighters battled an intense fire that severely damaged a Chinese restaurant in Wentzville early Monday morning.
First responders were dispatched to the Kwan Yin restaurant in the 1600 block of West Pearce Boulevard, just off Interstate 70, around 6:30 a.m.
First responders witnessed the intensity and quickly upgraded the fire to four alarms. Images from SkyZoom 4 showed heavy smoke and flames shooting from the top of the building.
The effort included over 60 fire personnel from at least four fire departments. Officials said eight pumper trucks and three ladder trucks were also used in the effort.
Officials said the smoke from the fire at one point drifted across I-70. Authorities posted officers on the highway to alert drivers to slow down while passing through the area.
“There was very heavy smoke on both outer roads and Interstate 70,” said Robb Watkins, assistant chief with the Wentzville Fire Protection District. “There was some significant concern for interstate 70. We immediately shut down the outer road and I-70 was monitored by the state highway patrol and Wentzville Police Department.”
No injuries were reported and the cause is still under investigation.
“The owner said he left last night, at about 8:30 p.m.,” said Watkins.
Watkins said the owner was the last person out the building. The first indication of a problem was when the alarm company called the owner Monday morning about a possible break-in, Watkins said.
The 3,400-square-foot restaurant has been at the location for 40 years, according to Wentzville fire officials.
“All of us have eaten here,” Watkins said. “It’s a fixture in Wentzville. It’s a very sad day.”
A Disaster Action Team with the American Red Cross St. Louis Chapter provided first responders with drinks and snacks as authorities worked to put out the fire.
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