Wildfire burns 20 homes in Reno

Caughlin fire Reno
Caughlin fire Reno
A home burns in the Caughlin fire in southwest Reno at approximately 9 a.m. November 18, 2011. Photo by Sarah Bear

UPDATE: at 3:30 p.m. PT, Nov. 18

Reno Fire Chief Mike Hernandez said the Caughlin fire damaged or destroyed 25 homes but firefighters saved about 4,000 to 4,500 homes. He said the fire has burned 2,000 acres but the forward spread has stopped and firefighters are making good progress.

A 74-year old man suffered a heart attack and died during the evacuation and a local hospital treated 16 patients for respiratory conditions.


At least 20 homes in southwest Reno, Nevada have burned in the wind-driven Caughlin wildfire. The Reno Gazette-Journal reports that 9,500 people had been evacuated as of 9:53 a.m. on Friday, but at 10:32 the evacuation area expanded.

Map of Caughlin fire Reno 1125 11-18-2011
Map of the Caughlin fire area near Reno, 11:25 a.m. 11-18-2011 by "Bryce"

The above map showing the Caughlin fire area in Reno is unofficial and is produced by “Bryce”. It is the only map we could find and it may or may not be accurate. The blue line is supposed to represent the evacuation area. The map was obtained at 11:25 a.m. PT November 18, 2011. “Bryce” revises the map frequently, and the “live” version can be found HERE.

Governor Brian Sandoval spoke at a press conference Friday morning and announced that he had declared a state of emergency and requested help from California. Reno Fire Chief Michael Hernandez said at the time that the fire would remain a threat throughout the day, with active firefighting expected for the next 24 to 36 hours.

Friday morning the Federal Emergency Management Agency declared the fire to be a “major disaster” and approved a Fire Management Assistance Grant. As a result, Nevada is eligible for up to 75% funding assistance for eligible costs.

The strong winds that are driving the fire have caused the cancellation or delay of several flights at Reno-Tahoe International Airport.

Genny Wilson, the District Ranger of the Carson Ranger District on the Toiyabe National Forest said the fire has burned about 450 acres on the national forest, however most of the fire is within the city of Reno.

KTVN has frequent reports on the fire, and occasionally they have live streaming video.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.