Media Release


Sunday, May 11, 2014
For Immediate Release
Fire & Rescue

Contact: Tim Szymanski
Telephone: 303-2993


Wind Fans Flames In Early Morning Vacant House Fire
Wind Storm Did Little Damage In City


A wind storm that entered the city late Saturday night caused very little damage.  The wind did enhance a fire in a vacant downtown house early Sunday morning.  There were no reported injuries during the wind storm.

Winds increased gradually in the city after 5 p.m. Saturday.  By 10 p.m. some of the strongest wind gusts were occurring in some parts of the city between 40-50 mph.

There were nine electrical related calls in the city between 10 p.m. and midnight.  Most were reports of wires arcing on utility poles, two reported poles down and two reports of wires down in the street.  There were no fires or injuries reported at any of the incidents.  There were several areas in the city that reported brief periods of power outages.

About 2:20 a.m. firefighters responded to a reported brush fire near a building on North Rancho Drive.  Someone had put the fire out using a garden hose by the time firefighters arrived, there was no damage.  Firefighters believe an improperly discarded cigarette started the fire.

Fire dispatchers then received several calls at 5:40 a.m. of a vacant house on fire at 245 S. 17th Street.  When firefighters arrived on scene, fire was coming out a kitchen window of the one-story, wood-frame house.  The wind was able to fan the flames into the yard, which cause some damage to the yard, a fence and some electrical wires.  Firefighters had the fire under control in less than 10 minutes.  The fire caused $50,000 damage to the house, which has been vacant for more than a year according to neighbors.  The house was unsecured and it appeared to fire investigators that it was being used by homeless people.  The cause of the fire is under investigation.  There were no injuries during the incident.

The high wind warning was replaced overnight with a wind advisory by the National Weather Service for Las Vegas which ends at 2 p.m. today.  Gusty winds will continue from the north today and diminish later this evening.

A fire weather warning / red flag warning remains in effect until 5 p.m.  A red flag means conditions are favorable for the spread of fire due to low humidity, gusty winds and very dry conditions.  As in this morning’s fire, fires in buildings are also enhanced by weather conditions especial during red flag.  The fire inside the house extended outside and quickly spread because of the dry, windy conditions.  During the period people should be extremely careful with fire and discard smoking material properly so it can not start a fire.

E4,201,1,10, T1, R4, EMS15, AR1, B1,3, 6i4, 6i6, 6i8, 6i12
Incident: 4128201


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