CNJ staff photo: Sharna Johnson A fire started about 1 a.m. Monday at the Kripple Creek restaurant and caused significant damage to the kitchen, fire officials said.
A fire early Monday morning caused significant damage to the Kripple Creek restaurant on north Prince Street, according to Clovis Fire Chief Ray Westerman.
The business was closed Monday.
Westerman said as far as he knows no one was in the building when the fire started around 1 a.m.
The fire, which began in the food preparation area near the fryers and grills, caused significant damage in the kitchen and to the hooded ventilation system on the roof, Westerman said. There is also significant smoke damage throughout the restaurant, he said.
Firefighters had to force entry into the locked building, Westerman said, but were able to extinguish the blaze rather quickly.
Westerman said the fire appeared to be an accident but a full investigation is customary.
The restaurant will be turned back over to the owner after fire and insurance investigators have concluded their work, he said.
The restaurant’s owner could not be reached for comment.