Four businesses total loss after West Valley fire, firefighter released from hospital

Jun 7, 2024, 3:33 PM | Updated: 6:59 pm

WEST VALLEY CITY — Several business owners in West Valley City are picking up the pieces after a serious fire that broke out Thursday. Fire officials said four business were a total loss, another with extensive water damage.

Firefighter injured, at least 2 businesses total losses in WVC strip mall fire

It happened around 6 p.m. at a shopping center near 4700 S and 4000 W. On Thursday, fire officials originally said. two business were impacted.

West Valley City Fire Chief John Evans estimates the damage for the shopping center itself is close to $2,000,000. “The roof has come on all four of the business,” he said. “There’s not much left inside right now.”

Chief Evans said it took several hours and about 60 firefighters from across the valley to fight the fire. “The main part of the fire was out. But…when the roof deck comes in, that’s why we were here for a while, just pouring water on it, trying to get that underneath of the fire out,” he said.

Thursday’s hot weather also played a role. “The problem is when it’s 90-something degrees and (firefighters) are in that gear, you’re trying to get them rest every so often just for the exhaustion and stuff in this type of weather.”

One of the businesses lost is Vickey’s Peruvian Restaurant. The restaurant’s owner Victoria Palomino Leon was almost in tears seeing her business destroyed.

“It’s like a dream,” she said in Spanish. Leon said she and her employees saw the smoke but could not tell where it was coming from. Once they saw the blaze, everyone inside was able to evacuate safety.

“We thought that we would be able to grab anything left inside, the firefighters took us inside, but everything is gone.”

Leon said her business has only been open for about two years. “We’ve been growing little by little she said.” But now, her she and her six other employees are with out work.

She said she’ll work to move forward and is grateful no one was seriously injured.

A firefighter did suffer a shoulder injury, but Chief Evans said that firefighter was treated and released from the hospital.

“Thankfully, the firefighter is going to be okay,” Evans said. “The silver lining is none of the occupants in any of the businesses were hurt. They were all out. That’s the main thing for those occupants.”

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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Four businesses total loss after West Valley fire, firefighter released from hospital