Willard Fire & Rescue was called to the store at 412 E. Walton St., Willard, at 8:01 a.m.
“It appears it started in the eight-track unit,” said Chief Joe Reiderman, referring to the HVAC unit, which sustained some fire damage. “An employee found it when they were opening up.”
Family Dollar wasn’t open at the time of the fire.
Upon arrival, firefighters found heavy smoke throughout the building.
“That’s not far from the fire station,” Reiderman said.
The crew had the blaze under control within an hour of arriving. Reiderman said the department called in investigators with the state fire marshal’s office “to get a second set of eyes on the cause.”
“We haven’t gotten all that back yet,” the chief added.
Firefighters canceled a mutual-aid request for a tanker from the Plymouth Volunteer Fire Department while it was on the way. The crew shut down the gas and electricity to the store.
Reiderman said a sanitarian with the health department came to the scene for an inspection since Family Dollar sustained smoke damage throughout the building and the business sells food items.
“It’s going to be down for a bit,” the chief added. “They will have to have a commercial inspection through the state to get the power back on.”
Firefighters were at the scene between 2 1/2 and three hours.