Fire destroys Lake Arrowhead residence during blizzard
By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
A home reportedly owned by Debra White in the 500 block of Golf Course near Tunnel Road in Lake Arrowhead caught fire at about 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 25, during a snowstorm. The winds of the blizzard seemed to fan the flames.
After several days of heavy snow, the roadways, although previously plowed, were almost impassable due to the constant falling snow, creating challenges for the fire vehicles and other responding agencies to get to the site. Representatives of the Southern California Gas Company could not even get to the site to turn off the gas and requested County Fire to turn it off for them, giving them the location of the meter, which otherwise may have been difficult to find in the snowstorm.
It was difficult to move the fire hoses in the snow while fighting the fire during the storm. The firefighters were being careful to avoid the electrical lines in the area despite limited visibility due to the falling snow. The fire turned the night sky pink and orange, from the flames. Local residents reported they could see the glow in the sky from across the lake.
There were reportedly no occupants at the residence at the time of the fire. Since it took extra time to arrive, the trees immediately surrounding the home caught on fire, but the threat to other vegetation was mitigated by the four feet of snow on the ground and the efforts of the firefighters.
Although the San Bernardino County Fire Department fought a good fight when they got there, despite adverse conditions, the roof of the building still collapsed. On scene were San Bernardino County Fire units BC130, ME91, MA91 and ME92 with ME26 on scene to assist.
It is reported the owner of the residence is Debra White, described as an incredible lady who is a professor at Cal Baptist. She is active in the mountain community, leading a Bible study at Church of the Woods in Lake Arrowhead, and she also recruits the speakers for Mountain Christian Fellowship.
Extreme weather and road conditions made it difficult for firefighters to reach this burning home on Golf Course Road in Lake Arrowhead. (Photo: Facebook)