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Gaming Stops at Empress Casino During Damage Assessment

By Tim State in News on Mar 21, 2009 7:47PM

The entrance to the Empress Casino was damaged by fire. Photo by Litandmore.
Yesterday’s fire at the Empress Casino in Joliet has left it closed. Managers are meeting with insurance adjusters and the Illinois Gaming Board today to determine the extent of the damage. The closure puts about 850 people out of work for the moment.

The fire broke out yesterday morning about 10 a.m., and is believed to have been started by welders working on kitchen duct work. It’s also believe the fire spread quickly because of the number of “void spaces” inside walls and ceilings, making it difficult to fight the spreading fire. Within hours, more than half of Joliet’s fire department was battling the blaze. No one was injured in the fire.

If you’re wondering about your promotional coupons for the Empress, they’re being accepted at Hollywood Casino in Aurora. [Trib]