Fires

Small blaze forces brief evacuation of West Sacramento Ikea store

Ikea was the first big tenant to locate in West Sacramento’s Riverpoint Marketplace, which opened in 2006.
Ikea was the first big tenant to locate in West Sacramento’s Riverpoint Marketplace, which opened in 2006. Sacramento Bee file

A small fire that broke out in a woodshop inside the Ikea store in West Sacramento on Saturday afternoon forced the evacuation of the sprawling retail outlet but was extinguished a short time later and the store reopened without injuries to anyone, officials said.

West Sacramento Fire Battalion Chief John Muir said the fire was reported at 3:57 p.m. and appeared to have been sparked in a second-floor woodshop in the building where a worker had been making cross cuts on some lumber. The worker took a break and left the room, and when he returned noticed smoke, Muir said.

Authorities still do not know how the fire began, but a vacuum system designed to draw sawdust out of the room apparently helped spread it through 75 feet of 8-inch diameter metal ductwork that led out to the back of the store and forced firefighters to inject extinguishers into some portions of the duct work and cut into other parts of it.

“We had the fire under control in about 15 minutes,” Muir said, adding that six engines, two ladder trucks and two battalion chiefs responded to the scene.

Muir praised Ikea workers for calmly and quickly getting customers evacuated from the store, which was packed with holiday shoppers.

“They did a really good job of evacuating the building,” Muir said.

Smoke from the fire did not make it into the retail area from the woodshop, which is used to construct displays, and the store reopened at 5:05 p.m., Muir said.

Sam Stanton: 916-321-1091, @StantonSam

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