Carthage Fire releases more info on Sassy Spoons fire - KOAM TV 7

Carthage Fire releases more info on Sassy Spoons fire

Updated June 6, 2013 - News release from the Carthage Fire Department:

The Carthage Fire Department responded to a reported commercial structure fire on the historic Carthage Square at approximately 3:05 p.m. on Saturday, June 01, 2013.  Carthage fire crews began arriving on scene at approximately 3:10 p.m.

First arriving fire crews found heavy smoke coming from the eaves and vents of a three story brick commercial building, commonly known as the Sassy Spoon at 146 4th Street.  Heavy smoke was encountered on all three levels of the building.  Additional aerial units were immediately requested via mutual aid from Webb City and Joplin Fire Departments.  Fire crews attempted several interior searches of the building to locate the seat of the fire, but all were unsuccessful.  The building collapsed approximately three hours into the event.

Fire crews were able to contain all fire damage to the building of origin and prevented any extension to two connected buildings as well as numerous other buildings located in close proximity.

One firefighter was injured when the second floor of the structure collapsed.  The firefighter was transported to Mercy McCune Brooks Hospital in Carthage with non-life-threatening injuries where he was treated and released.  

It took 35 firefighters to finally bring the fire under control at approximately 11:00 p.m.  After the fire was brought under control, the Carthage Public Works Department was contacted to ensure the structural integrity of the building.  It was determined one of the remaining walls needed to be torn down to prevent it collapsing.  Bennett Construction of Lamar responded to the scene and took the east wall of the building down to ensure life safety.

A thorough investigation was conducted by the Carthage Fire Department, Carthage Police Department, Missouri State Fire Marshal's Office and the BATFE on June 3rd.  As a result of the investigation, this fire was determined to be accidental due to the inability to eliminate the possibility of an ignited candle left unattended in close proximity to other normal combustible materials.  

The Carthage Fire Department received help at the scene from Joplin, Webb City, and Carterville Fire Departments; as well as the Carthage Police Department, Jasper County Sheriff's Office, Missouri State Highway Patrol, Mercy EMS, Carthage Water and Electric, Carthage Public Works Department, Carthage Street Department, and the American Red Cross.  Oronogo and Carterville Fire Departments responded to the Carthage Fire Department and covered our response area while our personnel were dedicated to the fire on the square.  Numerous citizens assisted in preparing meals for on-scene firefighters, as well as firefighters who covered all other emergency calls in the Carthage Fire District.  

The Carthage Fire Department extends a heartfelt thank you to all responders and volunteers who responded to this extremely large and challenging fire.  Without your help, the outcome for our historic downtown area could have been drastically different.

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Updated June 5, 2013:  The Carthage Fire Chief tells us they have ruled the fire at Sassy Spoons on the square an accidental fire.

The fire chief says a burning candle caused the weekend fire.


Updated June 3, 2013:  Authorities launch an investigation into what started the fire at a downtown Carthage restaurant over the weekend.

The fire broke out Saturday afternoon destroying the Sassy Spoon.  The building, built in the mid-1800's, collapsed into the basement.

One firefighter from Carthage was injured fighting the fire when the front of the building collapsed, but has been treated and released from the hospital.

The state fire marshal is still conducting interviews but says there is no indication of anything suspicious.


Posted June 1, 2013:  A Fire threatens the Carthage downtown square.

Crews from multiple agencies are battling a fire that started in the Sassy Spoon restaurant on the Carthage square. Ladder trucks from Joplin and Webb city have been called to the scene to help.

Structures on the square in Carthage are older buildings that are connected creating a risk for fire to spread to other businesses.

Crews are also searching nearby buildings.

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