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Family loses home in fire, neighbors concerned about fire hydrants not working

Published: Dec. 7, 2021 at 8:27 PM EST
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Just weeks before the holidays, one family is without a home after it caught fire early Tuesday morning.

The home is on Waylon Road in the Ogden area, just a few doors down from Nikki Bascome.

Bascome is heartbroken for her neighbors, but thankful the dry and windy conditions didn’t make matters worse.

“We didn’t hear anything we thought maybe we heard fire trucks but it wasn’t anything that woke us up we slept right through everything we’re just kind of scary to think that if this fire wasn’t contained how far would it have spread with a drought with the wind with everything that’s going on,” Bascome said.

But that wasn’t her only concern. “and then we get to the real problem, the fire hydrant wasn’t working, why not?” Bascome said.

Rumors started about the nearby fire hydrant not working as crews arrived on scene. “That’s not the case, we have run into the issue where we have hydrants that are independently and privately owned,” Mary Evans, New Hanover County Deputy Fire Marshall explained.

Officials said that’s why the nearby fire hydrant is painted black.

Crews on the scene said they had plenty of water in their trucks to put the fire out. Nearly a dozen trucks responded to the incident and crews noted that they had plenty of resources between the manpower and water to put the fire out quickly.

New Hanover County Fire carries 1,000 gallons of water in their trucks because of limited access to fire hydrants throughout the county.

But not having a public water line for fire crews to tap into at the nearby hydrant doesn’t sit well with Bascome. “If a fire were to happen in your home, you see a hydrant on the corner, you feel a sense of security. Firefighters pull up at your home, they spot that fire hydrant, they have a sense of security . . . it was all gone,” Bascome said.

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