CAPE NEDDICK, Maine — Jason Miller stood on the sidelines Friday morning as firefighters worked to contain a kitchen wall fire at First Hill Gardens, the former Arrows restaurant he bought just months ago.

“It’s just a building. I’ve been through this before, I’ll probably be there again,” he said with a wry smile. “The important thing is no one was hurt.”

Firefighters from York Beach, Ogunquit and York Village responded to the scene at 41 Ogunquit Road just past the Ogunquit town line, called in by a worker shortly after 10 a.m. Friday. All agree the quick response by Ogunquit firefighters saved the building from more extensive damage. First Hill Gardens is a wedding and events facility, named after one of Miller's restaurants, First Hill in York.

According to York Beach Fire Chief David Bridges, the fire broke out behind a brick wall next to the restaurant’s smoker, which is on the outside of the building.

Ogunquit Fire Chief Edward Smith was first on the scene, arriving within minutes of the call, which was placed directly to the OFD. He said flames were coming out of the clapboards above the brick wall and smoke was showing from the eaves.

Four Ogunquit firefighters also responded and got “a good start” before YBFD arrived on scene. Because of its rather remote location, said Bridges, the restaurant is 8 to 10 minutes away from the station.

Bridges said nothing in the kitchen seemed to be damaged, except electrical wiring. As the morning proceeded, firefighters were seen breaking down the brick wall because, said Bridges, someone noticed what looked like a red area at the base of that wall. They were checking with thermal imaging devices to make sure there were no pop-up fires.

“It could have been much worse,” Bridges said. “If the call came in at midnight and the fire had been smoldering for hours, who knows how much damage would have been done.”

He said he did not have an estimate of damage. “With today’s expenses it’s hard to say," he said. "If they’re going to build new, who knows how much?”

Both Bridges and Smith made a point of stressing that people should not call a fire station directly, but rather 911. “We happened to be in the station, but we could have easily been on a call,” Smith said. In fact, York Beach firefighters were on a call when the OFD was notified.

“We have a problem with people calling direct to the station,” Bridges said. Dispatchers have knowledge of all fire department calls and can dispatch the nearest ones immediately while others are arriving on scene. “We need to know as soon as possible.”

Miller, meanwhile, was not unmindful of the problems he faced with a fire-damaged weddings and events facility at the start of the summer season. But he was philosophical.

“If there’s any silver lining, it’s that we just opened so we hadn’t booked a lot of weddings for this summer,” he said. “If it was next summer at this time, it would be a very different story.”