Fire temporarily closes popular Tyne Valley business

Eric McCarthy
Published on January 10, 2014

TYNE VALLEY -- Lorna Dillon was hailing two diners as heroes Friday after they helped knock down a fire in her Tyne Valley business, Dillon’s Kwik Way.

The fire broke out in the kitchen of the building which houses a convenience store restaurant, laundramat and hair salon in the very heart of Tyne Valley.

John Dennis and Mike Sherren sprung to action and directed the business’s fire extinguisher on the fire which was climbing the wall in the kitchen. 

By the time they had emptied the extinguisher the Tyne Valley Fire Department was on the scene and completed the job with their own extinguisher.

“They just came for a meal,” Dillon observed of her two heroes, admitting they got more than they bargained for.

“I’m still hungry,” Sherren chuckled after being checked over and treated for smoke inhalation at the scene by paramedics.

“I just stayed in longer than I should’ve. I got a little bit of smoke in my lungs and then it kicked in. I just got a little light-headed and started coughing and gagging. I should have had a mask on,” said Sherren, a former firefighter, who admitted he knew better.

“We had gone for lunch and were just half way through lunch and… ‘Fire!’” Dennis related.

“We heard the girls talking about a fire and I was, ‘I wonder where the fire is?’ We found out it was in the kitchen.”

The fire was contained to the kitchen but Tyne Valley deputy chief William Bishop said the entire building sustained extensive smoke damage. “There was about three feet of smoke throughout the whole building when we got here,” he reported.

Mutual Aid was triggered when the call of a structural fire at the store was received, but Bishop said the other departments were called off once the fire was out.

Provincial fire marshal Dave Rossiter examined the scene and ruled the fire accidental. “Something happened on the top of the stove. We’re not sure yet because it’s all melted down. We know there was something on top of the stove and it melted, and that’s what started the fire.”

Rossiter admitted a major tragedy was averted. “It’s a very good, quick, efficient response by the fire department. This could have been a major loss. They put this out with an extinguisher. If it wasn’t for the quick action by the fire department, this would have been a major, major loss in the community.”

Dillon, who, with her husband, Paul purchased the property in June, 2011, agrees things could have been much worse. She expects the entire business will be closed for a while for clean-up and was confident the loss would be covered by insurance. Exhaust fans were already employed, clearing smoke form the building.

“It’s a wonderful business because the community needs it,” Dillon said. “I was doing hair for my Friday morning ladies and I was just thinking to mself how lovely it is, because the men always come here 9 o’clock every morning, and the laughter in here is just music to my ears. I love hearing it, and I love seeing a community use it as much as they can, and they do.”

Collectively, the different entities under one roof employ 14 people.