A fire which broke out Saturday evening in an IT room at Michigan’s Bay Mills Resort & Casino led the tribal gaming venue to temporarily shutter. The soonest it is likely to reopen is reportedly Wednesday.
Key internal systems were damaged. They will not be operational for at least three to five days, the Michigan Upper Peninsula gaming property reported on Saturday.
The fire was first observed at about 7 pm. It was in an information technology room on the main floor. Sprinklers were activated.
Smoke Coming from Ceiling
“I noticed that the fire strobes were blinking in the casino,” Jack Kronemeyer, a casino IT specialist, told WPBN, a local TV station.
So, I went back to my office, and … I started smelling smoke… Then, I looked up at our lights in our office, and there was smoke coming out of the ceiling.”
The fire was largely extinguished by water from the sprinklers, WPBN said. Firefighters soon arrived to extinguish the rest of the fire.
A damage estimate was not immediately available. Casino officials estimated the temporary closing will lead to the loss of thousands of dollars, WPBN said.
Sizable Losses Predicted
Casino officials were hoping this year the venue would have a comeback after the pandemic.
It’s very unfortunate, and there will probably be some sizable losses as a result of this,” Bay Mills Casino Manager Richard LeBlanc told WPBN.
No one was injured from the fire. Some 250 guests or employees were all safely evacuated from the casino.
But technology systems were damaged.
“At this moment in time, the heart of our information technology system has been severely compromised,” a casino Facebook post said. Gaming, internet, phones, credit cards, reservation systems, and ATMs are among the systems not working, the casino said.
“We anticipate that these systems will remain down for the next 3 to 5 days, which will result in the temporary closure of Bay Mills Resort & Casino,” the Facebook post added.
On Saturday night, hotel guests were allowed to stay in the hotel. The Back Bay Grill served drinks and food. Hotel guests who left received a full refund. Reservations for five days from Saturday had to be canceled. The guests will be refunded their money.
Golf Course Open
Adjacent Wild Bluff Golf Course remains open for cash-paying players. Three nearby businesses, Bay Mart Gas Station, Four Seasons Market & Deli, and Northern Light Cannabis Company remain open, too.
The gaming property is located in Brimley, Mich. It is owned and operated by the Bay Mills Indian Community.
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