Brush fire destroys home in Louisa, 1,300 acres burn

By: Laura Geller - bio | email

LOUISA, VA (WWBT) - Louisa County is under a local state of emergency this morning after an estimated 1,300 acres burned in the county. Several homes have also been damaged. This all started when a tree hit a power line in the 1000 block of Chopping Road Saturday. At this point it's unclear if the wind is responsible for the blowing the tree into that power line.

The flames almost unbelievable. They light the night in a stunning orange hue as smoke billows to the sky. It's been like this for hours as more than 1,300 acres in Louisa continue to burn. In the path of the brutal blaze, the homes of Brandon Reeves and Steve Sexton. Now facing a reality they never imagined.

"It's scary, especially at my age," said Sexton. "To wake up tomorrow morning with absolutely nothing; it's real scary."

Authorities asked them to evacuate as the flames devour the land just yards from their homes. Reeves took his wife, children and dog, along with photos and important papers to his mother's. Tonight, he stands guard.

"It's horrible," he said. "I mean there's no other way to describe it. It's pretty bad."

The wind is what scares them the most. It whips and drives the fire to eat more and more property. Spotsylvania, Hanover and Henrico fire departments are answering the call for help. We're told pine trees take up much of the scorched land, adding fuel to the fire.

"Our crews are doing the best they can to put down fire lines to contain the fire," said Louisa County spokesperson Amanda Reidelbach. "It is massive. It is a very large fire that has jumped the fire line a number of times."

Louisa has opened a shelter. Residents now with nowhere to go, hoping they'll have something to return to come morning.

"I guess all we can do is just pray and wish for the best," said evacuated homeowner Lolita Smith. "We just have to stick together."

Sunday morning those staying at the emergency shelter were allowed to return to their homes. By 6:00 a.m. firefighers had contained the blaze.

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