KUNR Today: Fire Restrictions Ordered For Truckee Meadows, Wildfire Smoke Does End Up Indoors | KUNR

KUNR Today: Fire Restrictions Ordered For Truckee Meadows, Wildfire Smoke Does End Up Indoors

Jul 20, 2021

Here are your local news headlines for the morning of Tuesday, July 20, 2021.

PG&E Says Its Equipment Possibly Linked To Big Wildfire
By The Associated Press

Pacific Gas & Electric says its equipment may have been involved in the start of a fire burning in the Sierra Nevada that is threatening hundreds of homes.
 

PG&E said in a report to the California Public Utilities Commission that a repairman responding to a circuit outage on July 13 spotted blown fuses in a conductor atop a pole, a tree leaning into the conductor and fire at the base of the tree. The blaze is burning northeast of the town of Paradise, where a 2018 fire that was started by PG&E equipment killed 85 people.
 

Fire Restrictions In Place Throughout The Truckee Meadows
By Isaac Hoops

With continued hot and dry conditions in Northern Nevada, the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District has issued new fire restrictions for the area.

Recreational campfires and open flame charcoal barbeques are now prohibited throughout much of Washoe County.

“Given the extreme heat and dry conditions, and the fact that we're really about six, seven weeks ahead of where we would normally be [at] this stage in the wildfire season, it's prudent for us to enact some fire restrictions,” said Adam Mayberry, the communications officer for the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District.

Similar fire restrictions have been in place around Lake Tahoe since last month. Although open flame charcoal and camp fires are prohibited, alternatives such as electric, propane and pellet stoves for residential use are still allowed.

As for when these restrictions may be lifted?

“They usually stay in place until we get some moisture, so that's usually until the fall,” Mayberry said.

Officials also strongly recommend avoiding activities that can spark fires, such as target shooting and off-roading.

Wildfire Smoke Likely To Last Until Fall
By Maggie Mullen, Mountain West News Bureau

Wildfire smoke came to the region early this year and is likely to stick around until the fall. That’s according to experts like Sarah Coefield. She’s an air quality specialist in Missoula County, Montana.

She said it’s simple - smoke depends on fire activity. And much of the region is at above-average risk for wildfire through September. Coefield said it’s important to know that wildfire smoke does end up indoors.

"The old public health advice of just, go inside, close your doors and windows, that isn't really the go-to anymore, especially now that we have these long duration smoke events," she said.

To stay safe, Coefielld recommends using an air purifier with a true HEPA filter or upgrading the filter in your forced air system.

Reno Housing Officials Offering Incentives To Connect Landlords With Tenants
By Isaac Hoops

The Reno Housing Authority is offering incentives to landlords and property managers who provide housing to low income residents.

Current rental vacancies are at around 3% in the Truckee Meadows. Individuals using housing vouchers are having a hard time finding places to rent. This program is intended to bring those individuals together with landlords in order to provide them with housing.

‘Boil Water’ Notice In Place For Areas In Douglas County
By Isaac Hoops

A precautionary ‘boil water’ notice has been issued for the East Valley Water System in Douglas County. Residents in the area are advised to not drink water without first bringing it to a boil for two minutes or switching to bottled water.

The notice is in effect due to a loss of water pressure; however, the water supply will not be shut off. The notice is expected to be lifted by Friday.

Nevada Man Gets Probation For Voting Twice In 2016 Election
By The Associated Press

A Nevada man has been sentenced to up to two years of probation for a rare charge of voting twice in the same election.
 

Craig Frank's attorney, Thomas Boley, called the sentence Monday in Clark County District Court a fair and appropriate resolution to the case. Frank is 53. He avoided trial when he pleaded guilty in February to voting more than once in the 2016 presidential election. He acknowledged voting twice both in Benton, Arkansas, and in Las Vegas.
 

His lawyer says that if Frank completes probation, the charge against him can be reduced to a misdemeanor.
 

Explainer: How California Could Recall Its Governor
By The Associated Press

California Gov. Gavin Newsom is facing a recall election Sept. 14 that could remove him from office.
 

Forty-one people qualified to run as candidates seeking to replace Newsom, but the field remains unsettled because Republican talk show host Larry Elder is challenging a state decision to reject his candidacy. The secretary of state says Elder filed incomplete tax returns that are required to run. Elder denies that.
 

Newsom was elected in a 2018 landslide but his popularity tumbled over frustration with school and business closings in the pandemic. Other Republican candidates include businessman John Cox and former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer.
 

California Launches Largest Free School Lunch Program In US
By The Associated Press

Flush with cash from an unexpected budget surplus, California is launching the nation's largest statewide universal free lunch program. When classrooms open for the fall term, every one of California's 6.2 million public school students will have the option to eat school meals for free, regardless of their family's income.
 

It is an undertaking that is winning praise as a pioneering way to reduce the stigma and shame of taking a free meal in the school cafeteria. Some U.S. cities including New York and Boston have similar programs but until recently there were no statewide initiatives. California approved its program last month, and Maine followed soon after with a similar plan.