Pet store damaged by fire in Lafayette

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LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) The owner of a Aquarium Central in Lafayette is trying to figure out what to do next after his store caught fire Tuesday night.

Some animals did not survive the fire.

Joey Bennett estimates he lost $20,000 in fish and other merchandise.

“The surge protector was at the top. Maybe it was overloaded. Maybe it was faulty. It caused some kind of overheating pattern.” Bennett said.

The fire broke out inside the store around 11:30 p.m. and is believed to be an electrical fire, that started at a large wooden cabinet of aquariums.

Firefighters put out the fire quickly. Then, helped save as many animals as they could.

“When we put the fire out and cleared the smoke, firefighters jumped into action to help him evacuate as many of the animals as possible.” Lafayette Fire Department Public Information Officer Alton Trahan.

Bennett has been in business for about 4 and 1/2 years, after earning his Biology degree at the UL – Lafayette.

He says business was good before this, even in the pandemic.

He says he has insurance, but it’s too early to say what he’ll do next.

“This is an intergrated passion for me. Working at pet stores. Teaching people about marine and fresh water life. As far as right now, I’m going to get insurance quotes. See how much it’s going to cost. See what’s at fault. Take it day by day.”

A GoFundMe account has been set up for Bennett. Click here

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