Though the State Fire Inspector could not comment on causal factors for the fire, the Cadiz Record has made a request for facts through the Freedom of Information Act, and will update this story as more information becomes available.
The owner of the franchised business, Frank Mastey of Eddyville, discussed the 4 am events. According to his account, his son Joseph Mastey, the manager of the restaurant, was on the premises at the time of the fire to perform an inventory and to balance the books. “He (Joseph Mastey) forgot his calculator in the office. When he got up to get it, he took a few steps and the ceiling fell through behind him. He jumped out the back door, and closed it behind him.”
The elder Mastey said his son was not injured.
Though he had not been given an official fire marshal’s report, Frank Mastey said that he had heard some unofficial speculation about the cause of the fire from investigators. “They think it might have been started in one of the ballasts in the overhead lighting. It seemed almost like what happened at the Cadiz Florist.”
A fireman at the scene who declined to give his name confirmed that the fire seemed to begin within an attic or drop-ceiling space, and added that arson was not being considered in the investigation.
The restaurant was constructed in the year 1998 and was assessed at the Trigg County Property Value Administrator’s Office to have a land value of $55,000 and a total value of $164,000.
A consequence of the fire was unforeseen, but potentially costly. Directly over the center of the façade’s roof were main cables for telephone service, operated by Bell South. Though not measured, the space between the roof and the cables appeared to be no more than 6 feet.
An early comment from Bell South came from a technician who declined to be named. He said the total repairs included 2 sections of copper cable, and 1 of fiber optic. He was uncertain of the dollar value of repairs, nor who would be billed for it. He was also unable to comment on how many subscribers suffered from the outage, or the duration of service interruption. He had been on the job personally for about 14 hours. He referred inquiries to his supervisor, who did not return the calls of the Cadiz Record.
For the rest of this story, please see this week's edition of The Cadiz Record.