Friday, October 19, 2007


Austin, Texas
Job, The Hills of Lakeway
The Situation:
Someone welding on a used piece of equipment approximately five miles west of our job site managed to set fire to the tinder dry Texas range land. This land consisted of small mesquite trees, low shrubs and bushes, and lots of tall dry grasses, a tinder box just ready to burn. A west wind was blowing the fire directly toward our golf jobsite and the multi-million dollar community that lay around the development.
What to do:
I could see the smoke rising in the west and knew the fire would be arriving on the western boundary of our developments property. I made the rounds of the job site and sent all the heavy equipment, especially the 8 bulldozers we had to the western properly line to await the arrival of the immediate flames themselves. Not wanting to tear up the surrounding country side, not to mention other peoples private property, we had to wait until it got to us.
You had to see this:
As the fire hit the property line everyone swung into action, it was a roaring wall of fire coming toward us and a wall of huge bulldozers going toward the fire. It was an amazing scene to behold, it was smoke, fire, dirt, trees and machines all in one big chaotic battle. The way to fight a fire like this one is to push everything toward, or into the fire, leaving nothing ahead of the fire to burn thus starving the fire of fuel and causing it to burn out on its own, stopping it right there. Plus pushing into the fire you take dirt along with everything else creating a smothering effect.
It's over:
The fire was stopped dead in its tracks on the western property line, all was over before the fire companies could even arrive. This was fun for all of us and the main reason we did it wasn't to save millions of dollars worth of homes and expensive real estate, no, not for a pat on the back from grateful property owners, no, not to be hero's, no, not because it was our job, nope, so why did we do it? simply because we could!
All in a days work, I guess.

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