Fire damages Richland restaurant

Fire caused some damage to Sakura Asian Bistro on Keene Road Wednesday morning.

Fire at a Richland restaurant Wednesday morning caused some relatively minor damage, thanks to the quick response from the Richland Fire Department.

“We were so close, we were able to get here and get the fire knocked down within about a minute,” said Battalion Chief Brenda Rodgers. “The building doesn’t have any sprinklers to hold down the fire, so being able to get here quickly made a big difference.”

Rodgers said the size, occupancy, and other factors related to the commercial building on Keene Road just off of Gage Boulevard mean the building isn’t required to have sprinklers.

Investigators believe the fire may have started at Sakura Asian Bistro when a worker turned on a heating source, which ignited some nearby grease. The fire started in the kitchen, and crews worked to check the attic and between walls to make sure the flames hadn’t spread.

Power had to be shut off to the restaurant while crews were on the scene, and several other businesses had to ventilated because of smoke.

No injuries were reported, and it’s not known how long it might take before the restaurant can reopen.