UPDATE 2: Brush Fires Under Control After Massive Effort
Crews with the Doña Ana County Fire and Emergency Services Department are on standby after several brush fires ripped through the southern part of the county near Sunland Park and Santa Teresa late into Monday night.
The flames were brought under control early Tuesday morning, according to Sunland Park Fire Chief Andres Burciaga.
“We still have a few hot spots, but they’re in an area that isn’t easily accessible,” Burciaga said. “The next step is to go in on foot and clear the area with chainsaws and hand tools to put out those hot spots.
With gusting winds expected through the end of Tuesday, that area of Doña Ana County remains vulnerable, according to Fire Marshal Robert Monsivaiz. More than a dozen fire crews from throughout the county were sent to Sunland Park Monday afternoon to help bring the blazes under control. The first fire was reported around 4 p.m. in the 4800 block of McNutt, near Santa Teresa Middle School. Another was reported around 7:30 p.m. in the 100 block of Comerciantes.
Winds carried burning embers across the Texas state line, scorching portions of houses along Country Club Road. No other structures in Doña Ana County were affected, according to Burciaga. Fire crews with the Bureau of Land Management have been deployed to assist the Sunland Park Fire Department, Burciaga said.
The cause of the fires remains under investigation.