Fourmile Fire: 92 structures lost, partial property list released
By Vanessa Miller, Laura Snider and Michael Davidson, Camera Staff Writers
Posted: 09/07/2010 05:09:28 AM MDT
A house burns in the Fourmile Fire, shown in a video courtesy of Channel 7 Denver. (Channel 7)
Even with Boulder County's worst wildfire in recent history raging in the hills near their house, Sandy and Anne Butterfield aren't willing to leave their beloved home in the Pine Brook Hills neighborhood.
They are among thousands of people who have received orders to flee the 7,120-acre Fourmile Fire, which was still raging out of control Tuesday night after destroying at least 92 structures and damaging eight others. It's the worst fire in terms of property damage in Boulder County history.
Properties confirmed lost
The Boulder Office of Emergency Management released this list of destroyed properties at 10 p.m. Tuesday. The addresses were determined from only 5 to 10 percent of the burned area, official said.
Still, Sandy Butterfield said he and his wife -- who have renovated every room in their home of 13 years and built the furniture inside -- "declined" the mandatory evacuation order and decided to stay.
"We are in a position where we can see the fire quite clearly," he said at about 8 p.m., after spending the previous night waking up every hour or so to check the fire's proximity to their home. "And we are prepared to leave and get out of Pine Brook in less than five minutes if we need to."
The blaze was moving northeast Tuesday night toward the Pine
Multiple agencies responded to a wildland fire in Emerson Gulch near Gold Hill. Crews worked through the night doing initial attack in homes in the Gold Hill area as well as Colorado Mountain Ranch. This morning the scene was one of burned homes, structures and cars. (Eric Peter Abramson, Special to The Denver Post)
Brook Hills and Boulder Heights neighborhoods, said Boulder County sheriff's Cmdr. Rick Brough.
The fire was zero-percent contained Tuesday night, and a federal "Type 2" incident management team -- made up of firefighters from several other states -- took over battling the blaze at 6 p.m. Members of a federal "Type 1" incident management team -- which is the same level that responded to Hurricane Katrina -- are scheduled to arrive today to help the firefighting effort.
Many of the lost homes are in the Gold Hill area, officials said, and more details about specific losses began to trickle out late Tuesday. The Boulder County Office of Emergency Management released a list of 53 homes that had been identified as destroyed after officials surveyed just 5 to 10 percent of the burned area Tuesday.
Homes on the list included several on Dixon, Emerson Gulch, Melvina Hill, Nancy Mine and Sunshine Canyon roads and Fourmile Canyon Drive. Leif Steiner, who lived at 1103 Melvina Hill Road, found out late Tuesday that his home was among those on the list.
"I assumed it because I literally got out a minute before my house was engulfed in flames," he said. "Embers were landing on me as I left."
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