Drought Watch: Changing the Fight Against Fires - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Drought Watch: Changing the Fight Against Fires

Firefighters responded to a fire at 37-hundred Iowa Park road around 8:45 am Tuesday.

"It was fully involved and once we had knocked the fire down and all of the exposures protected, we stood guard and waited until the equipment got there" said Jon Reese W.F.F.D. Assistant Chief.

The vacant house had been demolished before the fire started, so the piles of debris made it difficult to douse the smoldering areas buried underneath.

"Our first priority has always been and will always be life safety and property conservation. And, had this been endangering another structure we would've definitely aggressively fought it," said Chief Reese.

Chief Reese said, instead of just spraying water they are now doing more manual labor including, prepping homes, using fire to make fire lines, using hand tools and class-A foam.

"Class-A foam is about the only thing that helps us make the water go further, if you will. The only other thing is manual labor," said Chief Reese.

Using alternative methods helps to save about 20 percent of the water at each structure fire. The average fire truck holds five-hundred to seven-hundred gallons of water, so that 20 percent adds up to a lot of water saved.

"We're doing as much as humanly possible to alter our way to fight fire but unfortunately to put fire's out it takes water. We are being as good as stewards of the water as we possibly can." said Chief Reese.

He said the department wants to look at ways they can work smarter and be even more conservative with the declining resource.

Jenyne Donaldson, Newschannel Six.

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