Residents Return to Calif. Neighborhood Consumed by Fire | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
National & International News
The day’s top national and international news

Residents Return to Calif. Neighborhood Consumed by Fire

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    Residents of Lake County allowed back into their neighborhoods Friday saw for the first time the havoc wreaked by the massive Clayton Fire. (Published Saturday, Aug. 20, 2016)

    Residents of Lake County, California, were allowed back to their neighborhoods for the first time on Friday to see the devastation wreaked by the massive Clayton Fire. 

    While some were relieved to see their homes standing, residents Kevin Dean and his wife Katie were among those crying as they sifted through the ashes. 

    “It’s all gone,” Dead said, as he and his wife tried to look for anything that survived the flames. 

    About 189 homes were lost in the fire, which scorched about 4,000 acres. That number grew as of Friday, when the fire topped out at 90 percent containment. 

    How to Protect Yourself From Hackers

    [NATL] How to Protect Yourself From Hackers
    Thursday's news that Yahoo suffered a hack of 500 million of its user accounts may have many people taking a new look at how to keep their own email accounts and personal information secure. One easy way to protect yourself from hackers is by regularly updating your software. "Hackers are always finding new vulnerabilities to exploit," said Consumer Reports Editor Jerry Beilinson. (Published Friday, Sept. 23, 2016)

    "My mother's pearls are in there," Katie Dean said. 

    The Deans' neighbor, Wes Baker, also lost something precious to him in the fire. His cat, Tica, has yet to be found. 

    "She's a Siamese, and she's really old and really sweet," he said. 

    The Clayton Fire, which investigators believe was sparked by suspected serial arsonist Damin Anthony Pashilk, has left another scar on a county that was still recovering from last year’s fire season. 

    Sean Rayford/Getty Images

    Jessica Harrison said flames got within a stone’s throw from her house, but it wasn't burned down. 

    “I wish I could do something to help them,” Harrison said of neighbors who were less fortunate than her. “I’m thankful. I’m beyond thankful that I still have a house, especially since the day it started, the flames were literally out in that field — maybe 50 to 100 yards out.” 

    After realizing that fire crews had saved her home, Harrison also said, "We can't thank them enough. They're true heroes." 

    Meanwhile, Lake County animal control officials were feeding and providing water to ducks, chickens and a cat that had been left behind. They were told about a pig as well, but couldn't locate it initially, so hoped its family had taken it when they fled. 

    Smart Football Helmets

    [NATL] Smart Football Helmets
    The Friday night lights will illuminate high school football stadiums across the country this evening -- while new helmet technology is shedding light on one of football's long-time concerns: Concussions. (Published Friday, Sept. 23, 2016)

    That was unlikely, though, seeing as area residents had five minutes to grab their belongings and rush to safety. 

    So Bertelli and her partner Nehemiah White checked the paperwork and then went back in to look for the pig. They found it cuddling up to a kids’ pool that they’d just refilled with water. 

    “We checked and he’s OK now,” Bertelli said. 

    Animal control officials have been putting in long days while the Clayton Fire has ripped through Lake County, with many people working from 6 a.m. till 8 p.m. 

    K9 Carts Give Pets New Lease on Life

    [NATL] K9 Carts Give Pets New Lease on Life
    K9 Carts, a Washington state company, has been giving old animals new wheels for more than half a century. Workers at K9 Carts have outfitted dogs and cats, but also lambs, rabbits, even a 90-pound turkey. K9 Carts custom fits the contraptions to each animal and ships 60 to 70 of them around the world each week. The company was the first of its kind in America and has been around for 55 years. Not a lot of people, however, know that walkers for dogs and other pets exist. (Published Thursday, Sept. 22, 2016)

    The most unusual animal rescue so far was an emu, according to Bertelli. 

    “That was interesting,” she said, with a laugh. “We had the [American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals] here to help us with that one. Thank goodness!”