Deputy alerts firefighters to smoke coming from Sawmill Restaurant


NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Investigators are trying to determine what caused a deep vat fryer to ignite sparking a fire inside the kitchen at a popular New Hanover County restaurant.

The fire occurred at the Sawmill Restaurant located at 5611 Carolina Beach Road around 4:30 p.m., about an hour and half after it closed for the day.

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New Hanover County Deputy Fire Marshal David Stone says a deputy who was driving by the restaurant spotted smoke coming from the roof. He drove to a nearby fire station and alerted firefighters.

Due to firefighters’ quick response, Stone says they were able to contain the fire rather quickly. The fire appears to have originated near the deep vat fryer but Stone was unable to comment further on the exact cause.

The restaurant did not have a monitored smoke alarm system and is not required to have one since it is in an older building. Newer buildings in New Hanover County, however, are now required to have these systems in place, Stone said.

The restaurant is expected to remain closed for a while.