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VENTURA COUNTY ROUNDUP | WEST COUNTY / VENTURA

Salon Fire Traced Back to Restaurant

November 13, 1998|NANCY FORREST

Fire officials have confirmed that a $1.4-million fire that destroyed a second-story hair salon was caused by a grease fire that began in a Mexican restaurant downstairs.

Michael Kelley Eco Salon & Day Spa, at 422 E. Main St., suffered most of the damage in Wednesday's fire. The salon is above Joannafina's Mexican Cafe, 420 E. Main, which experienced some fire loss but sustained its greatest damage from water and smoke.

Mike Maher, a battalion chief for the Ventura Fire Department, said the blaze began at 9:22 a.m. in a small oven in the kitchen of Joannafina's, which had recently passed a safety inspection.

"The restaurant had undergone an inspection of its deep fryer hood system in September and was not due for its annual fire prevention inspection for three months," Maher said. "All inspections were up to date. They were in compliance with all safety codes."

Two other businesses--Ventura County Business Machines and the Book Mall of Ventura--also sustained water, smoke and soot damage.

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