150 responders from 10 surrounding fire and ambulance departments responded to a fire that all but destroyed on Jericho Turnpike early Saturday morning.
responded to multiple calls about smoke billowing from a building on Jericho Turnpike at about 12:05 a.m. Saturday, said Syosset Fire Chief Robert Kaplan. Upon arrival, they found all three floors of Caracalla fully engulfed in flames. Kaplan said the fire appeared to have started in the basement.
The blaze took 40 minutes to control and over two hours to fully extinguish, said Kaplan. 150 firemen responded to the scene from Plainview, Jericho, Bethpage, East Norwich, Oyster Bay, Locust Valley, Bayville, Cold Spring Harbor, and Melville fire departments, including assistance from Huntington ambulance.
"The intense heat of the fire combined with the heat outside meant the firefighters became exhausted quicker than normal," said Kaplan, adding that the many layers of the "older, wooden structure" contained pockets of "hot spots," making the fire harder to completely extinguish.
Four firefighters sustained minor injuries and were transported to where they were released hours later, said Kaplan. The restaurant was closed for the night and no one was in the building at the time of the fire.
Jericho Turnpike was closed from Underhill Boulevard to Michael Drive for four hours, said Kaplan.
The arson and bomb squad and the Nassau County Fire Marshal are investigating the cause of the fire, though at this time, the fire is not suspicious, according to Kaplan.