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NV wildfire forces evacuations

Thousands flee wind-whipped Caughlin Ranch fire near Reno

LAS VEGAS, NV (UPI) | November 19, 2011

A wild fire destroyed nearly two dozen homes and forced thousands of people in Reno, Nev., to flee the approaching flames, authorities said Friday.

Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval declared a state of emergency as the wind-whipped Caughlin Ranch fire reached 400 acres, KVVU-TV, Las Vegas reported. Winds were 20-35 mph with gusts in the 65-80 mph range.

NBC News said one person died of a heart attack in the fire zone.

"It's tough man, it's tough," Reno Fire Chief Michael Hernandez told the Reno Gazette-Journal. "The winds are not helping us at all."

The newspaper reported up to 9,000 people had been advised to evacuate.

Reno's KRNV reported firefighters hadn't determined what caused the wildfire.

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