Wildfire victim gives advice to homeowners near Bixby fire

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Updated: 11/09/2012 8:35 am Published: 11/08/2012 7:43 pm

Bixby Firefighters are working hard to keep a fire burning south of a home edition from getting any closer.

Firefighters estimate the fire has burned one-thousand acres. Firefighters say it started in a wooded area near South 191st Street and East 145th Avenue.  The smoke clouded the air in Bixby and Tulsa Thursday.

Victims of the Creek County wildfire say it is tough recovering from natural disasters involving Mother Nature.

"It's been three months and we're still not in a home," said Jennifer Hollingshead.

She’s been living in a mobile home with her family for the past three months. Next week, Hollingshead will move into her new home but it’s been a long process.

"It's tough. I mean you lose everything,” she told FOX23. “You don't know where to begin or where to start over."

The Creek County wildfire that started on a Thursday night in August destroyed her home near Mannford and more than 300 others as it scorched tens of thousands of acres. Hollingshead had only lived in the house for two days when the fire took everything she held close.

"Her baby books and stuff like that I don't have because I didn't know where they were," the mother said.

Firefighters in Bixby are working to control the flames before they get too close to houses.
The drought is still very much a reality.

“All this undeveloped area out here with the leaves that are falling so on and so forth you see once you get a spark, you see what we have,” Randy Brown, who lives about a half mile from the flames told FOX23.

Hollingshead had insurance and she says anyone in the path of a fire should have it.

"Not everyone that lost their home got assistance so please get insurance," she said. "You can't count on FEMA coming back out and helping people."

She says the fire may have taken everything but it didn't burn out her spirit and that's only made her family stronger.

"You don't realize what you have until it's gone," she said.

No structures have been destroyed in the Bixby fire and firefighters say it is still too early to determine a cause.

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