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Firefighters battling lightning blazes

Staff Reports

A lightning storm that swept through Central Nevada on Tuesday set 11 wildfires around Winnemucca, and prompted reports of another seven, according to the Bureau of Land Management.

Firefighters were unable to locate the additional fires because of nighttime conditions or precipitation occurring, but are actively looking for and staffing them today, officials said.

The largest fire reported is the Monroe Fire, currently estimated at 6,000-7,000 acres and burning adjacent to priority and general sage grouse habitat.

The next largest fire is the Sand Pass Fire, burning just north of Winnemucca off of Sand Pass Road, is approximately 2,400 acres.

The Mill Creek fire between Mill City and Jungo Road has been contained around 1000 acres. The remainder of the eight fires that are staffed are under 1,000 acres each.

“We ask that the public be extra vigilant and not contribute to human-caused fires,” says Robert Towne, District Manager. “Our fire resources are stretched thin and have their hands full with these lightning fires.”

Though no structures are imminently threatened at this time, additional resources – crews and aircraft – have been ordered to help the district fire resources suppress the fires. Currently the fires are being managed by local BLM incident commanders. Additional lightning is forecasted for today.