Box of rags burst into flames at restaurant - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Box of rags burst into flames at restaurant

BURLINGTON, Iowa (AP) - Firefighters responding to a chemical smell at a Burlington restaurant say they saw a box of cleaning rags spontaneously combust before their eyes.

Firefighters were called to Stonegate Grill on Saturday and used thermal imaging equipment to scan the room. They found a box of rags that was 100 degrees, or about 30 degrees hotter than the surrounding air.

Fire department officials say the box began smoking as firefighters removed it from the building. It then burst into flames.

Firefighters allowed the fire to burn itself out and then doused the rags with water.

Fire officials say the rags were used with a chemical cleaning solution to wipe down tables and other surfaces and were supposed to have been washed before being stored.

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