Fire Hits Chesterfield Businesses Before Holiday
CHESTERFIELD, SC — Chesterfield is cleaning up tonight, after a four-alarm fire gutted several stores on Main Street.
Residents say they are devastated knowing neighbors have lost their businesses, and jobs, heading into the holidays. But the town is pulling together, and vowing to come back from the blaze.
“The fire got trapped between several different floors, and we had a hard time actually reaching the fire itself,” says Chesterfield Fire Chief Michael White.
Nine fire departments battled the Tuesday night blaze for seven hours, as it ripped through buildings on Chesterfield’s Main Street.
The old buildings themselves providing extra challenges for the crews, as people were eating next door.
“The fire department told us about it,” says Jose Salinas of La Fogatas restaurant. “That we need to evacuate everybody out of here, because it was dangerous for them to be here. So we got everybody out.”
“It started to collapse, and we just had to bring all of our firefighters out of the building,” says Chief White.
“That’s pretty bad for that one building, that’s for sure,” says Chesterfield resident Steve Treadaway. “And the next building over, the Chesterfield Drug, is not in good shape either, from the looks of it.”
The fire started in the basement of the Pink Door Boutique, then spread to chesterfield drug.
A beauty salon, barber shop and a popular Mexican restaurant are also damaged.
“Very sad,” says Connie Cooper of Connie’s Creative Cuts. “It looked horrible. Flames were everywhere. You didn’t really know what was going on.”
All familiar places for locals. Places bathed in memories.
“It’s like losing an icon,” says Chesterfield resident Lester Rivers. “It’s like losing a member of the family. I mean what can you say? It’s places where we grew up at, as children.”
“It’s their livelihood,” says Chief White. “The whole town is devastated. But we’ll pull together on it, and we’ll all be better off because of it.”
business owners on main street say the fire — and the damage left behind — will have extra impact with small business saturday set for this weekend.