Firefighters from the Carpinteria-Summerland Fire Protection District battled one of the toughest fires of their careers this week.
A home on Whitney Avenue in Summerland went up in flames on Tuesday night.
Fire engineer Ron Husted said he hadn’t experienced anything like it in his 28 years on the job.
“It felt like we were at a brush fire and within seconds smoke was in our face,” Husted said.
Sundowner winds fanned the flames and sent embers towards homes and into neighborhoods.
At first, wind speeds were estimated to be about 30 miles an hour.
“Later on we found out that were gusts 60 to 70 miles per hour,” Husted said.
Firefighters realized they couldn’t save the engulfed home, so they turned their focus to saving neighboring homes and preventing flames from reaching nearby brush.
“They stayed on it until 2 in the morning and then again at 3 in the morning. They just kept at it,” said neighbor Deborah Franklin.
The home was destroyed, but no other homes were lost.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.