Firefighters save Aiken County homes and country club from raging brush fire

By: Kate Tillotson
By: Kate Tillotson

It all started this afternoon just off Midland Valley Drive in Aiken County.

That's where the Midland Valley golf course backs up to a number of homes.

Scary moments there for a number of local folks and firefighters as well.

News 12 had a crew at the site Thursday.

The extent of the damage done continues to sink in.

A wooded area divides the Midland Valley golf course at the bottom of a hill from a highly residential area at the top of the hill.

Luckily, this is where the fire was contained.

Thursday afternoon, fire was climbing this hill dangerously quickly, covering an acre in minutes.

Three fire engines responded, as did a brush truck. Langley, Bath, and the Aiken Fire Departments were put on standby.

We're told it all started about 2 o’clock down behind the clubhouse, where officials suspect a cigarette or even car exhaust could be to blame.

Who knew conditions were such that a little cigarette could cause all this damage.

Residents at the top of the hill are thankful no one was hurt.

“The wind started and it was just blazing everywhere. It was blazing as high as the houses. It jumped into my daughter's yard,” says Daphne Robertson, who called 911.

“I'm thankful for it's out, and everything's fine. My possessions, our dog, and everything's fine and everybody's OK,” says homeowner Hugh Rhodes.

Everyone is very thankful the fire was stopped before it could spread to the residential area.

The South Carolina Forestry Commission issued a Red Flag Alert Thursday because of the conditions out there.

The mix of very dry air with high winds makes for very dangerous conditions.


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