At 10:38 a.m. on Tuesday, December 14, 2021, SMFR responded to Highway 85 and Chatridge Court in Douglas County after multiple 911 callers reported a grass fire. Upon arrival, Local members observed a fast-moving grass fire on the northeast side of the intersection spreading uphill with homes threatened. Deputies from Douglas County Sheriff’s Office evacuated nearby residents as firefighters began an aggressive flanking attack on the flames. With humidity at 9% and winds gusting over 20 mph, a 2nd Alarm was transmitted, bringing additional personnel and equipment from across Douglas, Arapahoe and Jefferson Counties. A firefighting helicopter and reconnaissance airplane were also ordered, and a pre-evacuation warning was sent to residents in the Chatfield Estates community.
By 11:44 a.m. the fire had grown to 24 acres and forward spread was stopped, as short time later the fire was declared 100% contained. Fire Investigators identified the area where the fire started along Highway 85 but were unable to determine exactly what sparked the fire. Common roadside brush fire causes include burning cigarettes thrown from vehicles, sparks from chains dragging on the roadway and occasionally, catalytic converter failure leading to hot metal ejected from exhaust pipes.
Thankfully no injuries occurred, and firefighters prevented the fire from damaging the threatened structures. Residents at a home on Chatridge Court helped firefighters and their property by maintaining adequate defensible space and mowed grass long before this fire began. Wildfire mitigation is a vital consideration for residents and entire communities living in urban interface areas. For more information about how to keep your home and neighborhood safer from wildfire, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you to Douglas County Sheriff's Office, Colorado State Patrol, West Douglas County Fire Protection District, Douglas County Office of Emergency Management, Local 1309, Local 4116, Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control and Arapahoe Rescue Patrol, Inc. for assisting today.