A Merced Fire engine had to "drive through a wall of flames" to escape massive wildfire.
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Firefighters from across the Central Valley and state have been working around the clock battling the massive Creek Fire since it first sparked on Sept. 4.
The fast-moving wildfire prompted thousands to evacuate and destroyed homes and businesses in the foothill communities.
New helmet camera videos released by the Merced City Fire Department shows the first 12 hours of the firefight, and just how close crews came to the dangerous flames while trying to save homes in an undisclosed neighborhood.
Watch the astounding video from the Merced City Fire Department in the video player above.
In the video, firefighters can be seen trying to attack the blaze with water as the flames move toward them, and a thick wave of smoke fills the air.
The video also captured Merced Fire's OES 393 crew being overrun by the Creek Fire as it moved in fast to consume a neighborhood. Their engine had to "drive through a wall of flames" to escape, Merced Fire said.
"They work hard and right to the edge of danger. At times they are able to save homes, and other times, they are (overrun). It breaks their hearts when the fire wins," the department wrote on Facebook.
PHOTOS: Stunning images from the Creek Fire
Merced Fire said all residents who live on the street in the video were informed of the footage before it was released.
The department said the crew "fought until the final moments of being pinched off by the fire."
Merced Fire said they shared the footage to show how hard firefighters are working to try and salvage communities being threatened by wildfires.