Firefighters, first responders in a nonstop battle against Tiger Island Fire

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Published: Aug. 26, 2023 at 10:47 PM CDT
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Beauregard Parish, La. (KPLC) - It’s an eerie sight for a place many call home, now engulfed by the massive Tiger Island Fire.

It’s been nonstop for firefighters in Beauregard Parish.

“In 18 years I’ve never fought anything like this,” Anthony Broxson, assistant fire chief of Beauregard Fire District 2 said.

Smoke is seen miles away as wildfires continue to spread across Tiger Island leaving firefighters with little to no rest.

“Very little sleep, we’re just right back at it the next day,” Broxson said.

Wayne Baggett, the fire chief of Beauregard Fire District 2 said they were grabbing whatever they could to fuel up before people started donating meals.

“Basically, grab a candy bar or a coke or whatever you had,” Baggett said.

The fire known as “Tiger Island” now breaking records for Louisiana but that’s not the only flames they have to worry about.

“We’re talking about this particular fire but we’ve had eight new fires that are not associated with this fire,” Beauregard Parish Sheriff Mark Herford said.

He said they are monitoring the wind directions and the drought conditions which is making it even harder on first responders.

“It’s taking a lot out of us. The heat, the stress,” Broxson said.

The fires of Tiger Island have burned more than 33,000 acres, leaving the land charred and damaged.

State leaders like Congressman Mike Johnson are saying it’s the largest fire to ever ignite Louisiana.

“You’ve heard the word unprecedented thrown around quite a bit, we’ve never seen anything like this,” Johnson said. “We have not faced a disaster like this in our history and so we don’t have a complete playbook on how to address it.”

Those fighting the flames are exhausted and hope the end is in sight.

“We’re spread super thin. We’re doing everything we can to get to every fire as quickly as we possibly can. But we’ve got to have that downtown to get our units back up and into service before we can get to those fires” Broxson said.

For the latest on the efforts against the Tiger Island Fire, CLICK HERE.