Fire Left to Burn for 5 Days, No Fire Service Response

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Fire Left to Burn for 5 Days, no fire service

Big Lake, AK -- Audrey Williford and her husband were left homeless when their house, which is outside a fire service area (FSA) boundary, was left to burn to the ground.

On May 19, Audrey Williford and her husband Michael were sleeping after taking pain killers when they woke up confused.  They saw smoke and smelled burning plastic.  They thought that the neighbors were burning trash, but when they stood up to close the window, they realized their house was full of smoke.

The couple crawled downstairs and tried to turn the lights on, but they wouldn't work.  Then they tried to call 9-1-1, but the phone was dead.  Mrs. Williford grabbed a few things - clothes, keys, her phone, and the family dog, before escaping with her husband.

The neighbors called 9-1-1, and the response was, "They're out of the service area, sorry."

The fire burned for 5 days.  The Alaska Division of Forestry showed up to make sure the fire didn't effect the wild lands.  When they determined there was no threat, they left the fire to burn itself out.

Learn more about Alaska's FSA lines here. 

Mrs. and Mr. Williford plan to rebuild and add fire sprinklers to their new home. 

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