A build-up of grease and other substances in air ducts is being blamed as the cause of a fire at a restaurant in a mall in Maryland in the US.
The blaze, which began at the Crisp & Juicy Peruvian rotisserie chicken restaurant, forced the evacuation of the Montgomery County mall at 11.15am local time on Saturday. The shopping centre reopened after 2.30pm.
Around $180,000 worth of damage was caused to the building and a firefighter suffered minor injuries tackling the blaze, Scott Graham, assistant chief of Montgomery Country Fire and Rescue service told local radio station WTOP-FM.
A build-up of grease deposits in ventilation systems is one of the biggest potential fire risks in buildings with catering facilities.
Unclean air ducts can not only put catering areas at risk but could easily spread to the rest of the building.
Restaurateurs and managers working in food outlets should ensure that they carry out a regular fire risk assessment of their ventilation systems and to element any potential fire hazards.
Copyright Press Association 2014