SUB fires cause Original Burger Company to close

Authorities and firefighters wait outside the SUB for information. Jonah McKeown/TMN Digital

This is an update from our Jan. 13 story, Early morning fire evacuates SUB.

Original Burger Company could remain closed through the rest of the academic year after two related kitchen fires that occurred the morning of Jan. 13.

Sodexo General Manager Lora Cunningham says the first fire, which happened around 5 a.m., was caused when a fryer caught on fire, though she does not know why it happened. The second fire, which happened later that morning, was the result of some stray embers in the exhaust system, which caused some boards in the fume system to smoke.

Cunningham says Mainstreet Market opened 11 a.m. Jan. 14, although one of the fryers for the OBC is still out of commission.

Cunningham says they will start trying to put out more OBC offerings starting Jan. 19, staggering chicken products and then fries so they aren’t fried at the same time. These will be available in the main event line, right next to Blimpie’s, she says.

“We’re trying to get everything that the students might want,” Cunningham says. “The dilemma is that we only have one fryer in the back of the house to use right now.”

Cunningham says replacing the necessary equipment would take a minimum of six to eight weeks, which would allow OBC to resume full function during early March. However, Cunningham says Sodexo was going to begin renovations to include a Chik-fil-A in May. As such, she says Sodexo will probably just wait until then to complete any renovations.

Cunningham says to expect burgers, breaded chicken sandwiches and other OBC favorites, though a limited selection, and the whole menu will not be served every day.