Follow-up with a Doce Fire evacuee

June 24, 2013

Firefighters are starting to get a handle on the Doce Fire, burning west of Prescott. It’s reported to be about 50-percent contained and most of the homeowners who had been evacuated have been allowed to return home. That includes John Sears, who spoke with us last week, after he was evacuated.  John, good morning.

LAMBERT: John, good morning

SEARS: Good morning, Dennis.

LAMBERT: How did it feel to get back?

SEARS: it’s been a surreal experience. We took all day yesterday to move things back. I’m now sitting on my back patio looking out at the mountain. Tuesday night, this was the gates of hell. As we were throwing things in trucks and cars trying to get out of here, to get away from the fire, there was dozens of fire fighters racing toward the fire, and they stopped it. They stopped it essentially right behind our property. If I keep my gaze down, everything looks the same. It’s very quiet here. It’s breezy this morning, it’s cool. If I look up, I see the fire has taken the whole side of the mountain.

LAMBERT: You know, officials are warning now about the possibility of flooding in the burn area this summer. How concerned are you about that?

SEARS: Well, fortunately not so much. We’re on high ground here. But you can be sure that there will be mudslides and ash. It has to come down the mountain and then cross this great wide wash to get the properties but I think there’s some low-lying places that may be affected.

LAMBERT: How are your neighbors’ homes?

SEARS: I haven’t seen many of them. It’s been very spooky. It’s so quiet here this morning. Normally by this time you hear people getting up and around. It’s fairly large properties so we’re not right on top of each other, but there’s just no sign of life. I know they’re here, I saw lights in their houses last night. Every body had their own personal story, I think, and eventually over time we will begin to hear them.

LAMBERT: Well John, thanks for joining us.

SEARS: Thank you very much. Have a good day.

LAMBERT: You too.

John Sears is an attorney in Prescott

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