The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Grease fire suspected as cause of Golden Dragon blaze


Richard Jenkins/Daily Globe

IRONWOOD FIRE Marshal Brandon Snyder moves a fire truck ladder into position to fight a grease fire at the Golden Dragon Chinese Restaurant in downtown Ironwood Wednesday afternoon. The fire damage was mostly contained to the restaurant's kitchen, while other parts of the building sustained smoke and water damage. For more photos of the fire see page 7.


Ironwood - The dark smoke billowing out above downtown Ironwood Wednesday afternoon quickly drew a crowd to the area around the Golden Dragon Chinese Restaurant as firefighters worked to put out the flames of what is believed to be an out-of-control grease fire.

The fire damage was largely contained to the building's kitchen area and a connecting roof vent, according to Ironwood Fire Marshal Brandon Snyder, with some other parts of the building sustaining some smoke and water damage.

The building didn't appear to sustain structural damage, according to Snyder.

"I think we're going to be in really good shape," he said, adding the damage could have been much worse.

Members of the Ironwood Public Safety Department and Ironwood Volunteer Fire Department responded to reports of the blaze at approximately 4:38 p.m., with Hurley Fire Department trucks arriving on scene shortly thereafter. The Gogebic County Sheriff's Department, Hurley Police Department and Michigan State Police assisted with traffic control, closing parts of several intersections in downtown, while Beacon Ambulance had personnel on standby.

Firefighters on the scene were unaware of anyone sustaining injuries as a result of the blaze and said the apartments above the restaurant appeared to have escaped the worst of the damage.

American Red Cross personnel were also on scene, talking to the building's tenants about what they needed.

"If they need housing, we'll get them into housing," said Ron Clemens, who is part of a Red Cross disaster action team. "... If they lost medication, we'll get them medication. We'll get them a ride to whereever they have to go (if they need one)."

Clemens said the Red Cross also provided food and water, which were donated by local businesses, to the firefighters at the scene.

While the fire was controlled by 5:30 p.m., firefighters remained on the scene until around 7 p.m. - putting away equipment and hoses, as well as helping residents gather items from their apartments.


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