Restaurant ’t Nije Hemelriek Completely Destroyed by Fire

Today, 06:59 • 2 minutes read

The fire completely destroyed the restaurant last night © Press Bureau Drenthe

Restaurant ’t Nije Hemelriek in Gasselte was hit by a fire last night. Around eleven o’clock in the evening, the fire department was alerted. By the time they arrived at the scene, flames were already coming out of the roof. “We received a report of a fire rumor around eleven o’clock,” recalls Marcel van Alphen, spokesperson for the Safety Region Drenthe. “When the first units arrived at the restaurant, the entire building was already on fire. There was nothing left to save. We had to choose to let the building burn down in a controlled manner.” Fire stations from Tweede Exloërmond, Borger, Gasselternijveen, Vries, Annen, and Gieten were called to extinguish the fire. Despite the proximity, it was difficult to get water to extinguish the fire. It was brought in with tankers. The firefighting was made more difficult because the restaurant is located in the middle of a forest. Van Alphen stated, “During the firefighting, we had to prevent the fire from spreading to the forest. Ultimately, we had to demolish the building with a crane to reach the last embers. If you don’t do this, it will keep smoking. At four o’clock last night, the last units were able to return to the fire station.” RTV Drenthe reporter Mirthe Zuhorn is at the site of the burnt restaurant this morning. “I only see debris. It has become a complete mess. I’m afraid there’s nothing left to salvage.” Zuhorn briefly spoke to the affected owner. She describes his reaction as disappointed. “When asked, ‘Are you from ’t Nije Hemelriek?’, he said, ‘I was, because there’s nothing left.’ Well, you can imagine how emotional he is.” According to the forest ranger, swimming lake ’t Nije Hemelriek will be closed due to the aftermath of the fire. There is soot left on the beach, which will be cleaned up. The water in the lake is contaminated, turns black, and may be drained as a result. This could take a week, Zuhorn hears. “Definitely not a one-day job.” It is not yet known how the fire started.

If you have a news tip, new information, or have spotted an error? Send a message, photo, or video via WhatsApp or email the editorial team.