RENO, Nev. (AP) — More than 1,300 firefighters worked to reinforce lines and aerial crews stepped up attacks ahead of gusty winds at two big Nevada wildfires on Monday, including one threatening to force evacuations at a tribal community northeast of Reno.
The National Weather Service issued a red-flag warning through Tuesday evening across nearly all of northern Nevada where the fire threat has been elevated because of a combination of winds expected to gust to 35 mph (56 kph), low humidity and temperatures from the mid-90s to near 100.
“A red flag warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now, or will shortly,” the weather service said Monday afternoon.
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management issued an evacuation advisory for the town of Sutcliffe on the edge of Pyramid Lake after flames burned Sunday night within a mile of the tribal community 35 miles (56 kilometers) northeast of Reno.
The BLM said tribal police will go door-to-door to notify residents in the event a mandatory evacuation is ordered. An evacuation center was being prepared at the school gym in Nixon southeast of the lake.
“The fire conditions may change without warning,” the agency warned Monday. “The situation is dynamic.”
The Pyramid Highway (State Route 445) was closed in both directions north of its intersection with State Route 446 south of Sutcliffe.
Nearly 900 firefighters were assigned to that Long Valley fire, which has burned an estimated 130 square miles (337 sq. kilometers) since it broke out July 11 in Doyle, California, near the Nevada line. It was estimated Monday to be 35 percent contained.
“Firefighters are holding, strengthening and constructing direct and indirect lines,” the agency said.
In north-central Nevada, more than 500 firefighters continued to battle a complex of four fires that have consumed 182 square miles (471…