Saturday, June 06, 2009

A Very Close Call...

Too close for comfort~

This is part of the fire crew from the jail that helped to put out the spot fires.

Yesterday a distant neighbor was clearing their property and burning leaves. The winds came up, and the fire quickly got away from them. My parents and I had just left the house to do our grocery shopping. Joe called on the phone to tell us that he was seeing fire trucks and smelling smoke. I was in shock, and said, "Are you sure?" He was serious!

We left everything we had in our carts and walked out of the store. As we were driving home, we could see the smoke plume in the air.

We remembered as we were leaving the bank that the Cal Fire truck went by with sirens blaring. We commented something along the lines of, "Oh no. I hope there isn't a big fire. We finished up at the bank and went on to do our shopping at Walmart, and my cell phone started ringing. It was the call from Joe.

This is one of the trucks that passed us as we left the bank.

All the way to the house, I kept thinking about what I would want to save and what could just be replaced. I decided to grab my photo albums, my laptop, some clothes, our toiletries, our medication, our bank account information, important papers, my camera, and the animals.

I never saw my dad drive so fast. We were all really worried. We pulled into the driveway to see firetrucks, smoke, and neighbors with hoses. I went into the house as fast as I could. Made sure Joe and the animals were ready. I grabbed my photo albums and camera. I then grabbed our meds and toiletries. We had just done laundry, so I figured a basket full would get us by for a few days.

This is the view from our front yard.

Then through the whole house and property I went taking pictures. I wanted to document everything in the house, but I also wanted to document all of the items outside, too. I figured insurance would be easier if I had immediately before pictures.

After the house was photographed, I went outside to photograph the fire, firefighters and of course, get some videos, too. LOL Leave it to a scrapbooker to want pictures of their house burning down!

This is the fire line they cut just yards from the house.

They were able to cut a fire line around our property and the neighbor's property mere minutes before the fire jumped into our back yards. The firemen on scene told me later that we really got a lucky break. They figured they were going to lose our house and the neighbor's house. When they came in with the D-8 Cat to cut the fire line, they ran into a fence. It slowed them down, and they had to cut through the fence to continue the line that would protect our houses.

The fire was moving very fast, and it took them from 5 - 10 minutes to get the fence down. The wind had slowed slightly, and that gave them the time they needed to get though the fence. He said if that small lull in the winds hadn't happened at that very minute, our places would have been in serious danger. Both houses most likely would have burned. As it was, the fire came in less than 100 yards of our house.

This is the D-8 when it first was cutting the lines (the fire is right in front of it).

Honestly, I was okay with whatever happened. I really didn't freak out or worry. I just figured it was all stuff, and stuff is replaceable. Maybe that attitude was what saved the house. Maybe it just wasn't our day to burn. Either way, yesterday our family was extremely lucky. We can look out the window, and count our blessings that the fire stopped there.


Sheri said...

Thank God everything turned out alright Laura. You were so fortunate..{{{{hugs}}}}}

Theresa said... scary! Glad all was well and you did lose anything.

Crystal Pledger said...

How scary! Thank God he was watching over your house! So glad it turned out okay.

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