ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- Career and volunteer units in Albemarle County responded to roughly 20 active brush fire calls Wednesday.

Some of the fires threatened structures and homes as they swept across the ground. One resident is thankful for the fast response from firefighters and neighbors.

"This has probably been coming for a long time. There's a lot of dead trees, a lot of brush out here. It was just waiting to happen," Sal Gomez, a homeowner in Albemarle County, said.

Community members and homeowners on Ilex Court, in the Dickerson Road area, teamed up with fire rescue teams to try and put out the flames before they encroached on homes.

Gomez has lived in the neighborhood for 10 years. He says that coming home to see the fire in his backyard wasn't something he expected. It's not an experience he wants to repeat.

"We've sat out here sometimes and looked and wondered what would happen, now we know. But, no it's never happened before and hopefully, it won't happen again,” said Gomez.

Firefighters and homeowners used shovels, rakes, garden hoses, and leaf blowers to build a fire line.

"Homeowners have been a great help. Originally it was just, you know, three of us here. Me, my captain and another firefighter from Albemarle County that showed up and we initially thought it was just going to be something small, that it was just coming across. And then we were shocked to see how much was involved. And later on in time, we had homeowners, after homeowners, after homeowners coming home. Some coming home straight from work and going ahead and putting in more work after hours, just trying to protect each other and their homes. It really brings a community together when everything is on the line here,” said Lieutenant Alex Soucy with the Stony Point Volunteer Fire Company.

Gomez said he's thankful for the quick response of firefighters and his neighbors.

"Well, our entire home, our vehicles, our pets, everything we’ve ever owned over the last 35 years that we’ve been married, plus. But I think we’re going to be fine. I think we’re going to be okay tonight and then a great group of neighbors. Kudos to the Albemarle County Fire and the Albemarle County Police. They’ve done a great job. They’ve kept everyone calm, organized, and they walked us through the process. I think we’ll be fine,” Gomez said.