Windmill Fire burned just under 100 acres near Sonoita

Windmill fire

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - High winds have firefighters on alert southeast of Tucson.

The Windmill Fire has burned just under 100 acres near Sonoita.

At last check, three hotshot crews were working to dig containment lines around the burned out area.

Several engines were on the scene as well.

These flames prompted some pre-evacuation warnings last night, but everyone was allowed back by the end of the night.

For some living in those communities, it was a reminder of the cost of wildfires in recent years.

“We watched fires come over the hill, toward our house, and we actually evacuated that night," said Roger Hawkins. "Just as they were coming, the fire crested over the hill, the wind changed direction and started blowing back the other way."

Hawkins said he’s proud of all the fireWise protection around his home, like a bed of rocks.

They were almost put to the test but Hawkins and his wife weren’t around. They were in Phoenix yesterday.

“I knew we had taken some preventative measures but until we got home today, I didn’t really know what the situation was," he said.

It was, and still is, good. Hawkins said these crews are great, but it’s not all up to them.

He said protecting what matters most starts at home.

“I went through here with a long pole and a big hook and pulled down as much as I could out of the trees," he said.

The Hawkins keep their grass low, leaves off the roof and even cut down a few trees for safety sake.

“If it’s close to this tree it’ll get into one tree and be into the next one and it just follows a chain," he said.

Homes in the area are spread out and surrounded by potential fuel for fires. For the Hawkins, every change is worth the effort no matter how much it hurts.

“Probably why this arm doesn’t work too well," he said. "My wife and I lifted all those boulders into place and cemented them in."

For a quiet community, there’s always work to be done.

“It can make a world of difference," he said.

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