Embers can be one of the greatest threats during a wildfire near a community. This Washington fire set homes and businesses ablaze in the heart of the city, a testament to the importance of preparing for wildfire no matter how far you are from the Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI). Our hearts go out to those who've lost their homes and businesses - we can't imagine how difficult of a recovery that must be.
"Homeowners forced to evacuate recently because of a rapidly moving wildfire in Washington state returned today to find that the blaze had burned so hot that few of their belongings remained or were even recognizable.
'[It] looks like a war zone,' Diane Reed told ABC News affiliate KOMO-TV. 'I've never seen anything like it ... To just sit back and think, I don't even have a fork or a plate or clothing — just your basic things that we all take for granted. It's just gone.'
Wenatchee, a town with a population of 30,000, suffered a double whammy. As fire ripped through neighborhoods and burning embers ignited several large businesses downtown, nearly half the city was ordered to shelter in place after an industrial fire and ammonia leak released a dangerous smoke plume."