A small fire Sunday night at 6S Steakhouse has been ruled an accident. And owner Brandon Steven expects the restaurant to reopen within a couple of days.
Investigators learned an outdoor, gas-fueled "fire effect" — it gives the illusion of a fireplace at the restaurant — caused an accidental fire, Wichita Fire Marshal Stuart Bevis said on Monday afternoon.
The fire caused about $50,000 in structural damage and $20,000 in content damage, Bevis said.
Owner Brandon Steven said he expects the steakhouse, at 6200 W. 21st St., to reopen on Tuesday or Wednesday.
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"The damage is very, very, very minor," he said. "We are very lucky the fire was contained."
On Monday, a spokesperson with the steakhouse posted on Facebook that the restaurant "will be back to business as normal in no time!"
John Turner, battalion chief with the Wichita Fire Department, told media at the scene on Sunday that an employee inside the restaurant reported the fire at about 10 p.m. Steven said he was not there at the time.
When crews arrived, Turner said the building was evacuated. About six employees, but no customers, were at the steakhouse at the time of the fire.
Turner said crews found smoke in the northeast corner of the building. They then opened up a wall and found fire "from top to bottom" of the restaurant, Turner said.
Smoke was "pushing out from the corner," Turner said, and they saw flames 3 to 4 feet high from the roof. The fire was concealed to a wall between the dining area and patio in the northeast corner, he said.
Responders found smoke damage throughout the dining area, Turner said. The smoke damage was found in the "Kansas room," Steven said, and it is in the process of being cleaned up.
On Monday morning, the northeast area of the restaurant and patio were blocked off.
One firefighter was taken to the hospital with minor shoulder injuries, Turner told those at the scene Sunday night. No other injuries were reported.
6S Steakhouse opened in January. Steven previously told The Eagle that it cost twice as much as he had planned.
The patio is a new feature Steven added to the steakhouse in April, about the same time the restaurant began serving brunch.