A Christmas Eve morning fire at a longtime Omaha restaurant caused heavy damage. Thick, black smoke and flames were coming from the roof when firefighters arrived at The Drover near 72nd and Mercy just after 9:00 a.m.
Battalion Chief Keith Main says they were able to bring the fire under control in about 15 minutes. "We were able to get on top of the roof and knock the fire down from the outside. Crews took another line through the front door and were able to get back to the kitchen area, where it started."
Main says there was one employee getting the kitchen set up for the day when the fire started. He was out of the building when firefighters arrived. Main says damage is significant. "The whole kitchen has to be replaced, the ceiling is all burned up and there is smoke damage throughout the building."
Damage is estimated at $97,000 and the fire has been determined to be accidental. It could be several days before the restaurant reopens.