Winds also yield dust storms, power outages
Fierce wind gusts did more than whip flames through the Washoe Valley on Tuesday.
Lyon County faced major dust storms and scattered power outages because of the high winds.
According to Jeff Page, emergency management director, visibility on Highway 50 from Dayton to Mark Twain was very low early in the day, as was Highway 95A from Fernley to Yerington.
By 4:30 p.m., he said it had gotten a little better, but still was a problem.
“I look out my office window now and I can’t see the brush behind the bakery across the street,” he said. “We’ve had bumps in power reported throughout the county.”
Page said there were no life-threatening conditions in the county at this point.
He said Central Lyon County Fire District dispatched an engine to Carson City to assist with a structure fire and were sending several brush trucks to a fire in Washoe Valley.
In Virginia City, Storey County Emergency Management Director Joe Curtis said they have had no calls regarding wind problems.
“The wind hasn’t been all that bad,” he said. “Not way out of line.”
Curtis said Storey County Fire Department has sent two of their firefighting resources to the Washoe Valley fire and has a liaison with their incident command.
“There’s no danger to the (Virginia City) Highlands or Storey County at all,” he said.
Crews from the Nevada Department of Transportation worked Tuesday to keep down the dust kicked up by the high winds near freeway construction.
Work at the Fairview Drive construction site can create a dust hazard, but all of it is not necessarily from the construction, said Scott Magruder, a department representative.
Crews used water to keep down the winds Magruder called “horrendous.”
Fay Anderson, spokesman for Sierra Pacific Power Co. said a line was down in the north end of Washoe Valley.
“The wind has caused the wires to slap together and caused an outage,” she said, adding she didn’t know if the fire was related to the outage.
She said there were scattered power outages in Reno, called service drops, where the line from the pole to a home becomes disengaged.
Service drops also have occurred in Washoe Valley, and Carson City and Minden also reported two short outages on Tuesday, called “trip and reclose,” meaning something got caught in the wire, then dislodged and power returned.
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