Four firefighters fend off massive Shiprock brush fire | KOB 4

Four firefighters fend off massive Shiprock brush fire

Meg Hilling
December 04, 2017 07:40 PM

FARMINGTON, N.M. -- When a massive brush fire broke out in Shiprock Sunday night, four firefighters did not hesitate to spring into action.


"It took us a while because, there was about 4 feet of dried grass, a lot of Russian olive trees and that was what was making the big sparks," Ojo Amarillo firefighter Eric Trevizo said.

From around 7 p.m. Sunday until 1 a.m. Monday, these firefighters fought relentlessly to stop a brush fire from spreading towards homes Sunday night near the San Juan River in Shiprock. When no backup came, they relied upon each other, their shovels and a combination of back burns to confine and suffocate the fire.

"We keep hollering for BIA Fire to get there and help us out, and at that time no response from them. We requested mutual aid, but politics, you know? Running into a few little problems," Trevizo said.

While local fire departments will always be more than glad to help when need, there are some things people can start doing today that will hopefully keep them from having to visit their neighborhoods. For example, start by keeping brush as far back from a house as possible. When working with anything flammable outside, be sure to pay attention to the wind.

"We try to tell everybody at least 20 feet of dry dirt all the way around your house. And then after that, you can grow your grass or whatever you need to grow," Lt. Jeff Holtsoi said.

While the men are tired and their gear could use a wash, they say they are ready for whatever fire may come next.

"I think we are used to that. It happened before and it is part of our job to do that," Holtsoi said.


Meg Hilling

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