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Local volunteer firefighters responded to an automatic alarm at 6:09 pm on Thursday, November 2, alerting them of an possible emergency at Misty Vale Deli & General Store at 51 Berkshire Road (Route 34), said Sandy Hook Volunteer Fire & Rescue Chief Bill Halstead.
On arriving and learning that smoke had filled the building, firefighters upgraded that call to a possible structure fire, resulting in all five local volunteer fire companies being mobilized.
Firefighters looked in through the deli’s front door and seeing the heavy smoke within, firefighters attempted to enter the business, which had closed for the day, Chief Halstead said. They needed to force open that door to gain entry and then learned that a cooking grill there had inadvertently been left on, resulting in the hot cooking surface producing the heavy smoke, he said.
Firefighters shut off the grill and then used large fans to ventilate the building, the fire chief said. A restoration firm was called to the scene to secure the structure.
Town Food Service Inspector Suzette LeBlanc later went to the deli to inspect the premises to learn whether the smoke had caused food-related contamination. A thorough inspection indicated that the “food contact surfaces” there had not been affected by the incident, Ms LeBlanc said November 9.
Only a few plastic squeeze bottles containing food dressing and a few paper cups and lids needed to be discarded, she said.
Misty Vale Deli & General Store was able to open for business the following day.