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September 21, 2012
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Highway 395 to be closed until early evening for wildfire

Highway 395 south of Gardnerville is expected to be closed for the next four hours as firefighters battle a 150-acre wildfire burning near Ray May Way.

Five homes are within a quarter mile or less of the fire front, according to Fire Information Office Mark Struble of the Sierra Front Interagency Dispatch Center.

Struble said no structures were lost as of 3:15 p.m. Power lines are down at the fire scene.

Three air tankers, two hand crews, a helicopter and 10 fire engines along with 95 firefighters.

According to Struble, the fire is burning toward Double Spring Flat and is threatening to jump Highway 395. There is no estimate of containment or control.

Trooper Chuck Allen reported at about 2:20 p.m. that it could be early evening before the highway reopens.

Motorists heading north along Highway 395 are being diverted at Holbrook Junction east to Yerington. Those traveling to Carson Valley may travel over Monitor Pass to Markleeville and then to Highway 88 north to Minden.

Southbound traffic is being stopped at Riverview Drive. Motorists may avoid the intersection by turning south onto Highway 88 from Highway 395 in Minden and then turning to Markleeville and over Monitor Pass to Topaz Lake.

Reports of the fire came in at about 12:25 p.m. Friday. The incident has been named the Carter Springs fire. The fire was at 30 acres in size as of 1:53 p.m.

Crews on scene said the flames were on the east side of the highway, consuming about 20 acres, and spreading south at a fast rate towards structures "in immediate danger."

The fire was reportedly burning in multiple spots.

By 12:35 p.m., rescue personnel were preparing to evacuate homes in the area, assisted by Douglas County Search and Rescue and the Sheriff's Office.

The hills above Pine View Estates were burned last summer in the 4,180-acre Ray May Fire, which started Aug. 16, 2011.

County Manager Steve Mokrohisky said Friday afternoon that East Fork Fire officials were working to set up a phone line for concerned residents. In the meantime, he said, residents should call East Fork at 782-9040 with any questions.

The highway has been closed at Ray May Way to the north and at Pine Valley Road to the south.

By 1:35 p.m. Friday, one air tanker, one helicopter, six engines, one hand crew and two command posts were battling the blaze.

NV Energy was notified of impacted power lines.

The fire is burning 1-2 miles south of Ray May Drive. Highway officials are suggesting motorists consider an alternate route.

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The Nevada Appeal Updated Sep 21, 2012 11:36PM Published Sep 21, 2012 03:40PM Copyright 2012 The Nevada Appeal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.