Weather & Wildfires: Ride Along With The W.F.F.D. - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Weather & Wildfires: Ride Along With The W.F.F.D.

Troy Williams recently celebrated his one year with the Wichita Falls Fire Department. 

This summer, he fought his first grass fire with the Wildland Team, an experience he'll never forget.

"You can see it off in the distance," Williams explained, "you can see the smoke. It can look intimidating."

Williams said the most important thing firefighters need to do when the see a grass fire is to take a breath, and assess the situation. 

That's when their training kicks in. 

"We can cut a line to get all the grass back to stop the fire, and we know how to use a drift torch and back burn towards the fire," Williams said.

On a windy day like today, people may be surprised just how fast a grass fire can start and how quickly they can spread.

"They think they can put it out or outrun it, but with a big grass fire you can't outrun it," Williams explained.

And there are other threats, too, like spot fires. The wind can spread blazes across roads, into neighborhoods, and even behind firefighters, potentially trapping them in. 

Despite the risks, Williams was prepared for the day's challenges.

"We're taught to always be ready, use our knowledge and put the fire out," Williams said. 

We were sure there would be grass fires, we just weren't sure when. 

After a few minor incidents, five o'clock came, and then it happened.

We followed firefighters to Central Freeway, where a big grass fire was burning. Using all the tools at their disposal, including a new state funded Wildland Firetruck, the W.F.F.D took about 30 minutes to silence the blaze..

Grass fire season lasts for twelve months in Texoma, and the Wichita Falls Fire Department, Williams included, feels the same way about conquering grass fires everyday.

"I'm ready for what happens."

Dave Caulfield, Newschannel 6

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