Wednesday, December 17, 2014

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Louie's closed after late-night fire

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Buffalo: Louie's closed after late-night fire
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Buffalo fire crews were busy late last night battling a fire at Louie's Hot Dog restaurant on Elmwood Ave. YNN's Kate McGowan has more.

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The windows at Louie's Hot Dogs are now boarded up, and shattered glass covers the sidewalk where the restaurant sits.

A fast moving fire swept through the building early Saturday morning.

"I had seen these flames shooting above the roof and it was pretty amazing. First fire I've really ever seen up close and personal," said a witness, Matthew Wargin.

"Made entry and made sure everybody was evacuated. As they were making entry, fire started rolling over the heads, out the front door. They were able to knock it down real quick," explained Buffalo fire chief, Jim Hayes.

Fire investigators said there were about ten customers inside and about five employees working when the fire started, but luckily everyone made it out safely.

"There was not a panic at all. We just orderly got them out and our employees got out," expressed the restaurant manager. "Fire people, police got here and they were all fantastic."

Fire officials said most damage from the fire is in the kitchen area but said there was also some smoke damage to a number of offices upstairs.

Investigators believe the fire may have started in a chimney in the kitchen.

"We are going to rebuild and we will be open for all our customers as soon as we can get it open," the manager said.

Restaurant owners in the Elmwood Village said it's a huge loss to the area but believe Louie's will bounce back quick.

The owner of Acropolis exclaimed, "No matter how small that place is, it's like a destination spot on that block and it's going to definitely hurt that block for awhile. It's a loss for the Elmwood Village but I can't see it too long, being closed."

"We've been here 20 years, we'll be here 20 more," the manager expressed. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP