Aftermath: One Store Gone, Others to Return after Belmont Street Blaze

Photo: The day after a fire destroyed Jimmy’s Food Mart.

The acrid smell from a fire that destroyed a Belmont Street convenient store Saturday night, April 18, remained in the air Sunday morning as an emergency services business was preparing to board up the burned out structure.

The interior of Jimmy’s Food Mart, at 297 Belmont St., was black and scorched, the food and fixtures burned, illuminated by the sunlight coming through the collapsed roof, the result of a three-alarm fire that began in the back of the store around 7:30 p.m. 

The blaze – which sent flames high into the air at the corner of Belmont and School streets – brought fire equipment in from Watertown, Cambridge and Waltham resulting in closing the major thoroughfare. 

While Jimmy’s is considered a loss, owners of the half dozen small businesses came by to enter their offices and stores to view how much damage they sustained. While the fire was substantial, the fast work by fire fighters and the structure of the building prevented an ever greater loss.

“It doesn’t appear that bad because of the fire wall and how quick the [fire departments] fought the fire,” said one business owner who did not want to be identified.

Many of the store fronts had front doors open to begin the process of airing out their businesses and discover how much water damage they had sustained. Owners were approached by cleaning and information recovery firms to help in the process.

When asked if his firm could be up and running after utilities are back, the owner said “Yes, that’s a possibility.” 

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