After Lakewood fire, officials urge caution amid dry conditions

West Pierce Fire and Rescue Assistant Superintendent said he was concerned bushfires could become more common in Puget Sound, so it was important to be prepared.

PIERCE COUNTY, Wash. – Shilo Alamillo was able to capture the heartbreaking moments of firefighters telling her and her family to leave their homes, all while a wildfire destroyed parts of Fort Steilacoom Park opposite with her home on August 16.

“Firefighters banged on our door and said, ‘you need to get out now, or you’re going to die!’,” she recalls. .”

Fire crews from West Pierce Fire and Rescue were called to the scene on Wednesday afternoon. By the time the crews arrived, fires had already broken out and threatened the homes.

Scott Kelly, West Pierce Fire and Rescue’s assistant fire chief, said: “We tried to tame it with our resources and water, but we soon realized we wouldn’t be able to. that. “We’ve put a lot of our equipment in those neighborhoods, knowing that if a fire breaks out, it will be our number one priority, protecting homes and protecting lives.”

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The evacuation order was issued as a precaution when the fire crews battling the blaze were no longer in effect.

No civilian injuries have been reported, but Sheriff Kelly said Wednesday’s event was a prime example of why it’s important to be prepared.

He also said this was the first time he had heard of an evacuation order being issued to Lakewood due to the fire. However, recent events such as the fire in the Jamestown mobile home community made him concerned that such events could become more common in Puget Sound.

“It’s very important that we prepare now,” he warned. “Evacuating is something we’ve always talked about east of the mountains, but over the last three or four years we’ve had some serious fires here. It’s becoming more common to me, to me. .”

Meanwhile, Alamillo said she’s glad the fire brigade acted so quickly, but she’s still trying to come to terms with what was lost and how it could get worse.

“It feels like I’m about to lose everything. We have another cat stuck in the house, so it feels like we’re going to lose a lot of the good things and memories that come to this house,” she said. “The whole valley is gone. All those memories, the beautiful sights, the beautiful roads, the trails, it’s all gone.”

Edmuns DeMars

Edmund DeMarche is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Edmund DeMarche joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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