RENO, Nev. — Two wildfires burning near Lake Tahoe on Friday morning prompted officials to order mandatory evacuations for about 500 homes in California and close a number of area roads and schools in Nevada.
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said a fire broke out early Friday near Cascade Lake and Emerald Bay around 1:30 a.m. It had charred about 200 acres by 8 a.m., but had not damaged any structures or caused any injuries.
Fire officials issued an evacuation order for 500 homes near South Lake Tahoe in the area of Spring Creek, Cathedral, the west shore of Fallen Leaf Lake, Cascade Properties and Cascade Lake. Voluntary evacuations were recommended for 500 more homes in the area.
Highway 89 was closed from Camp Richardson to Meeks Bay, the station reported.
Residents east of Lake Tahoe, across the Nevada state line, were warned to be ready for evacuations Friday because of a separate fast-moving wildfire nearby.
The Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources said Friday morning that Highway 580 and other roads surrounding nearby Washoe Lake were closed and a shelter had been set up in Reno in case evacuations are ordered.
Officials said residents in the communities of Washoe Valley, Galena and Montreaux should prepare for possible evacuations.
That wildfire was more than 100 acres and its cause was under investigation.
Two elementary schools, a high school and the Redfield campus of the University of Nevada, Reno were closed, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.
Jenny Ramella a spokeswoman for the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, said residents should take precautions ahead of any evacuations by taking any large animals like horses to an equestrian center in Reno.
Both fires were being fanned by strong winds of up to 70 mph, which could decrease later Friday. Rain was also expected.
Source: http://www.pressdemocrat.com/news/61925 ... ahoe-force