Watch: Officers risk their lives to save 60 animals from shelter as raging wildfire closes in
The animals were rescued from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) on Friday as the Nelson Fire spread towards the shelter
A body camera footage of officials in Vacaville, California released by the police department has shown how brave cops rushed to save cats and dogs from an animal shelter which was within yards of a rapidly spreading wildfire. The animals were rescued from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) of Solano County on Friday as the Nelson Fire spread towards the shelter.
Reports state that the officials saved at least 60 animals from the shelter and the nearby community rallied to give temporary foster homes to the rescued animals.
The Vacaville PD, in a statement, said: "As the Nelson Fire raced towards the south end of town, it looked like the Solano SPCA would be the first to be hit by the flames."
"Our officers worked with Humane Animal Services, SPCA staff and volunteers to evacuate all they could in a race against the clock," the police department said.
The SPCA said that the shelter staff had been put under mandatory evacuation with "extremely short notice" as the wildfire raged closer, according to the Daily Mail.
The video released by the local police department shows officials rushing into the shelter and leading the animals out and into their vehicles. Reports state that, after rescuing all the animals from the shelter, the officers drove them to safety.
The staff of the animal shelter rallied in a parking lot of a nearby Burger King and put out a call for community support so that the animals could find safe homes soon. Reports state that the staff witnessed an overwhelming support from the community.
The region's residents reportedly donated food, bedding and crates for the animals while some took them in to become temporary foster parents of the pets.
The Nelson Fire reportedly burned a total of 2,162 acres and destroyed one building before fire crews contained it. The fire, which started on Friday, was reportedly extinguished over the weekend before it could destroy the animal shelter.
Officials have launched an investigation as the cause of the fire has not yet been ascertained.
The SPCA of Solano County thanked the police officials and the community for their support in a statement.
"We thank you all so much for your donations, love, support, and concerns,' the shelter said. 'The Vacaville community has been so gracious to open their homes and hearts for us," the animal shelter said.