Peavine Heights resident reacts to Poeville Fire

Published: Jun. 29, 2020 at 8:56 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Wildland fire preparation for homeowners can be the difference between life and death.

Wildfires are nothing new to Gary Overholt and his family who live in the Peavine Heights neighborhood north of Reno. However, the Poeville fire hit a little different.

“At 9:00 a.m., it was so far away you wouldn’t imagine,” Gary Overholt said, “At 3:00 in the afternoon it was just controlled chaos.”

Overholt says the flames were burning about 50 yards away from his home.

A resident in Peavine Heights said the flames burned nearly 50 yards away from his home.
A resident in Peavine Heights said the flames burned nearly 50 yards away from his home.(Gary Overholt)

He added, "They actually used our backyard to get to the fires that were behind our house. The bombers flew over head right along our fence line."

One of his children and another adult living in his home are special needs, making evacuation all the more critical.

"The medicine, the documents, the records. everything is kept locked up and secure but you gotta take it with you anyway because we don't know when we're coming back," Overholt said, "Get them to safety first and worry about the possessions later."

His family fled on Saturday to stay with other loved ones in town. First responders worked all day and night to make sure the Overholt’s and so many others were out of harm’s way.

Overholt added, "I can't say enough for everybody that was helping - the neighbors, the police, the fireman, the bombers. So many thanks to so many people who contributed to our safety."

No matter where you live, wildfires can happen at a moments notice in Northern Nevada. It's up to all of us to be fire safe.

“Be prepared because it doesn’t give you a second chance, when it happens it’s there and it’s now.”

Gary Overholt

Fire officials say now is the time to clear your gutters, make sure your plants are well-watered and create defensible space around your home to help prevent wildfires from taking over your property.

Copyright 2020 KOLO. All rights reserved.

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