BOULEVARD, Calif. - Despite orders to evacuate due to the massive Shockey Fire, many residents in the Boulevard area decided they did not need to leave their homes.
One woman tried to ward off the fire line by soaking her home. She wasn't too confident about her decision to stay after surviving the fire relatively unscathed.
"I get out and I went, 'Oh my God!'" said Boulevard resident Melody Ponchot. "This was all on fire, blazing at about 40, 50 miles-an-hour, flying at me."
Ponchot and Donna Tisdale both live on a 300-acre ranch in Boulevard. They told 10News the fire swept onto their property in minutes and charred the entire 300 acres in under an hour.
"Three minutes. I could not believe I was standing with stuff blowing in my, all over me," said Ponchot.
"That brush when it went up was like, 'Woooosh!" exclaimed Tisdale. "And the noise it makes just makes your hair stand on end."
"You could not see my house. You could not see. Everything was just on fire and black," said Ponchot. "I knew right then and there my house was gone."
However, before the fire got close to her house, Ponchot hosed down the trees next to her house. Firefighters said that and the cleared brush probably saved her house.
"As you can see, where everything didn't burn I had let the water run," Ponchot pointed out to 10News.
Their neighbors weren't as lucky. A home burned to the ground less than a mile away.
Ponchot said she is now haunted by images of the animals that scattered when the fire burned through. She said rabbits and birds were on fire, flying or running away.
"I saw that … rabbits running on fire at my house, trying to escape it," said Ponchot. "I am numb about it. It's like, 'Is this real?'"