Fire sprinklers help save SW Bend kettle corn business

Workers with extinguishers also limit damage

BEND, Ore. - Sprinklers and workers wielding fire extinguishers helped limit the damage when spontaneous combustion of soybean oil sparked a fire at a southwest Bend kettle corn business, fire officials said.

Firefighters responded around 3:45 p.m. to the reported structure fire at Suzy Q's Kettle Corn, located in a small commercial mall on Southwest Division Street, said Battalion Chief Dave Howe.

The first crews to arrive found three sprinkler heads had activated and two people deploying fire extinguishers, Howe said.

Firefighters made a quick knockdown of the fire and performed extensive overhaul and salvage, he said, noting that the fire sprinkler system helped contain the blaze until firefighters arrived on scene.

Losses were estimated at $20,000 to the building and $10,000 worth of contents, both of which were insured, the fire official said.

The fire’s cause was determined to be spontaneous combustion of natural soybean oils in fabric, Howe said.

The fire official reminded the community that many types of natural oils can combust without a source of ignition, if not handled correctly. “Please follow the directions for disposal on all containers of natural oils,” Howe said.

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