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Employees out of work after fire destroys Foster Drive store

7 months 5 days 5 hours ago Thursday, April 30 2020 Apr 30, 2020 April 30, 2020 10:35 AM April 30, 2020 in News
Source: WBRZ Staff

BATON ROUGE- Black smoke filled the sky above North Foster Drive as Baton Rouge Firefighters battled flames at Foster Grocery Thursday morning.

"When I started smelling something, nothing visual happened. But when I started seeing smoke come out, it started to come by pretty quick," store employee Davis Nguyen said.

Nguyen watched as crews tried to save his place of work. He was the checking out customers when he noticed the smoke. 

"I smell something burning. So I thought because we're serving food something might be overcooked, and all I see is just big black smoke coming through the vents," Nguyen said.

Nguyen says he started working at Foster Grocery nearly four years ago. 

At the time of the fire, he says there were five other employees inside with him. Thankfully, everyone made it out safely.

"We were able to evacuate everyone before anything big happened," Nguyen said.

The Baton Rouge Fire Department said the flames tore through the attic of the building, causing the roof to collapse. 

The flames then spread to the nail salon next door. Neighboring businesses suffered heavy smoke damage.

"Right now we don't know the cause of the fire. Our investigators are on the scene as well, and we're just trying to gather all the information as we possibly can," BRFD spokesperson Mark Miles said. 

The fire caused $1.2 million in damages. Nguyen says now he's back to square one.

With the current climate surrounding the pandemic, he doesn't know what's next. 

"It's extremely hard. After, I don't know how long it's going to take to recover from this."

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