One couple returned home Friday to find their mailbox was the only thing that was still standing. Outside the smoldering houses, there were charred cars as well as a trampoline.
On some blocks, homes were reduced to smoke ruins while others were left standing unaffected by the flames.
Colorado residents were driven from their communities by a frightening, wind-whipped wildfire. Others had to wait to see the damage and wondered if their homes were among the more 500 that were feared to have been destroyed.
At least seven people were seriously injured in the fire that erupted outside Denver. However, there were no immediate reports about any deaths or missing persons.
Cathy Glaab discovered that her Superior home, where she lives with her husband, had been reduced to a pile of charred debris. It was one seven houses that had been destroyed by fire.
Glaab said that the mailbox is still standing and tried to smile through her tears. Glaab said, sadly, “So many memories.” She said that despite the destruction, they plan to rebuild the house they have owned since 1998. They love the fact that the land backs onto a natural space and they have a view to the mountains from the back.
Rick Dixon was worried that there would not be a place to return to after seeing firefighters save his burning home.
Dixon, his 21-year-old son and wife, found the home mostly destroyed, with a hole in the roof, but still standing. Only smoldering rubble was left where several homes from nearby families once stood, in a row directly next to theirs. He said that we thought we had lost everything. He held his mother-in law’s china in padded containers. They also recovered Dixon’s father’s sculptures as well as piles of clothes still hanging on hangers. The wildfire broke out Thursday in and around Louisville and Superior. These towns are about 20 miles (32km) northwest Denver and have a combined population, 34,000.
Tens of thousands were ordered out of their homes as the flames swept across drought-stricken communities at alarming speed. They were propelled by guests at 105 mph (169 KPH).
Two employees from Costco in Superior ran towards the checkout lines shouting, “Everyone evacuate, evacuate, evacuate!” Katrina Peterson, a woman who was inside, said:
A video she made showed dark skies outside and whirling debris. She had to blink to keep the falling ash from getting in her eyes. The store was left standing.
Investigators are still investigating the cause of this fire. Emergency officials stated that there were no downed powerlines around the spot where the fire brokeout.
People walked back to their homes Friday as some roads were still closed. They needed to get clothes, medicine, turn off the water to prevent pipes from freezing, and to check if they still owned a house. They left with backpacks and wagons, pulling suitcases and wagons down the sidewalk.
David Marks was standing on a hillside looking out at Superior with others. He used a pair of binoculars as well as a long-range lens camera to check if his house and that of his neighbors were still there. But he couldn’t tell if his place was okay. He stated that at least three of his friends had lost their homes.
He had been on the hillside and watched as the neighborhood burned.
He said that the houses were completely submerged by the time he got up to get up.
It happened so quickly. I have never seen anything like it. There were just houses after houses, fences after fences, and everything just exploded into flames. Friday’s first light had brought down the winds and the towering flames had subsided by Friday morning.
Light snow started to fall soon and the fire, which lasted at least 9.4 sq miles (24 km2), was no longer considered a danger.
If the New Year’s miracle holds up, there may be a New Year’s miracle for us. Jared Polis stated that many people only had minutes to evacuate.
The wildfire started unusually late in the year after a very dry fall and during a winter that was almost without snow.
Joe Pelle, Boulder County Sheriff, said that more than 500 homes were likely to have been destroyed. The governor and he both said that as many as 1,000 homes could have been destroyed, but that will not be known until crews assess the damage.
It’s amazing that we don’t have a 100-person missing persons list, sheriff said.
The sheriff stated that some communities were reduced to ‘’smoking holes in ground. He advised residents not to return until they are given the all-clear because of the danger from falling power lines or fire.
Sarah Owens, her husband, their adult son, and their dog were able to flee their Superior home in just 10 minutes after they received a Facebook alert about the evacuation. They had to walk the winding streets of Rock Creek for 2 miles, which took them about 1 hour.
Owens said that the good news is that Owens thinks Owens’ house may be okay.
But she stated that she would like to keep a bag with her in case of another emergency.
Owens stated that Owens had never imagined that a brush fire could cause such destruction. I want to stay here. There will always be natural disasters, no matter where you live. Superior and Louisville are full of middle- and upper-middle class subdivisions with shopping centers and parks. This area is located between Denver and Boulder, where you will find the University of Colorado.
Scientists claim climate change is making the weather more extreme and wildfires worse and more destructive.
Ninety percent in Boulder County are in severe, extreme drought. It hasn’t received significant rainfall since midsummer. Denver set a record for consecutive days of no snow, before getting a small storm Dec. 10, its last snowfall prior to the wildfires.
Bruce and Mary Janda were confronted Friday by the loss of their Louisville home after learning that it had been damaged through photos from a neighbor.
Bruce Janda explained that while we knew that the house had been destroyed, I felt the need for a tour to see it and the rest of the neighborhood. We are a close-knit community on this street. We all know each others and love each other. It’s hard for us all to see this happen.
(This story was not edited by Devdiscourse staff. It is generated automatically from a syndicated feed.