The Scottsdale Diamond Fire: Lessons in Bravery, Vulnerability and Recklessness

Photo Credit:

The recent Diamond Fire in North Scottsdale struck serious concerns, if not outright fear, into many area residents. It is entirely contained at the time of writing, but many residents still can’t claim to be completely out of the metaphorical woods yet when it comes to emotional damage. Widespread fires are not an issue that plague the Valley very often, and while they are obviously never a good thing, they do lift the veil on some of the best and worst of society.

The fire took place right outside the Rio Verde Foothills and led to the evacuation of 100 homes. It is worth mentioning the resolve of that community; having had to deal with the legislative and municipal bickering and deep uncertainty over their water supply, then they need to deal with this (as their water supply isn’t yet secured). As the saying goes, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and at this point the residents must be forged of steel.

Next, we need to give kudos to the Scottsdale Fire Department. Their job is never easy, but wild uncontrolled fires with nearly unlimited fuel only make it more difficult. The deaths of the hotshot firefighters at the Yarnell Hill fire was exactly 10 years ago as of a few weeks ago, adding a bit of dark irony to this situation. We are grateful that even though the city of Scottsdale was deeply hesitant to bring water to the area, that the Scottsdale firefighters aren’t playing by the same rules as the government.

But amongst these stories of strength and resolve, the finger-pointing of the cause remains. Fire officials stated that the last five area fires were caused by construction activity, and this fire seems to have started right near the area of new development. Since this is obviously a recurring trend, it is worth asking what development companies are doing wrong to spark these fires. While we prefer small government principles, that only works with accountability for malfeasance which costs the public. We should be asking some tough questions and not stop until we get acceptable answers.

While this fire caused quite a scare, it appears as though no worst-case scenarios came about. As such it is never a bad time to honor the best that humanity has to offer, and while we don’t want to jump to accusatory conclusions, there are very valid questions to ask about the actions of development companies and how they may be contributing to this and previous fires.