Empress Takes $340 Million Fire Hit

Damages still being determined by investigators

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009  |  Updated 8:15 AM CDT
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Extra-Alarm Fire at Empress Casino

The March 20th fire reportedly did about $340 million in damages.

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Extra-Alarm Fire at Empress Casino

Sky5 is over the scene of an extra-alarm fire at Empress Casino in Joliet.
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It's gotta be the biggest payout ever made at the Empress Casino.

The Joliet Fire Department estimates that the massive March 20 fire, sparked by a construction worker,  did about $340 million worth of damage to the complex.
  
The main part of the casino in Joliet wasn't heavily damaged.

Fire Chief Joe Formhals calls the estimate rough, but says it's required as part of official reports. An Empress spokesman says insurance agents are still working on their own estimates.
  
The fire department estimate includes $290 million for reconstruction costs and $50 million for losses inside the building.
  
Empress officials haven't set a reopening date. Based on 2008 figures, the casino could be losing more than a half million dollars daily.
 

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