Las Tusas – San Miguel County – Update 3 #nmfire

Update 11 a.m. 5/11/23: The Las Tusas fire is located on private land near HWY 94, west of Sapello in San Miguel County. The cause of the fire is under investigation. State, local and federal resources are responding and fire managers have implemented a full suppression strategy. At this time, the fire has burned over 1,000 estimated acres. Firefighters have confirmed that structures were lost and emergency responders are currently in the area assessing the damage. Evacuations are in place. 

Resources: This morning, the Northern New Mexico Type 3 Incident Management Team assumed command of the fire. 2 Hotshot crews, 1 Type 2 IA Handcrew, 4 dozers, 6 engines, multiple volunteer engines, 1 Type 3 Helicopter. Additional resources such as an air attack, hotshot crews, engines and infrared mapping aircraft have been ordered by the team to bolster the firefighting effort. 

Weather: Strong west to northwest winds and low humidity will impact portions of central and eastern New Mexico again today as an upper low pressure system lifts northward into Colorado. A Red Flag Warning is in place for the area until 8 p.m. this evening. A Wind Advisory predicts winds from the west to northwest at 25 to 35 mph with gusts up to 50 mph. 

Evacuations: Evacuations are in place for Highway 94 residents from Canoncito to the intersection of Highway 266 and 94. Shelters for evacuees have been set up in San Miguel County at the locations listed below. 

– Abe Montoya Recreation Center, 1751 N Grand Ave, Las Vegas, NM 87701.   

– Storrie Lake State Park, 3 Esequiel C De Baca LN, Las Vegas, NM 87701 
Closures: HWY 94 has been closed to incoming traffic.  

Smoke: Individuals sensitive to wildfire smoke should take precautions and use the New Mexico Department of Health 5-3-1 Visibility Method to determine if it’s safe to be outside. Learn more at  An interactive smoke map at allows you to zoom into your area to see the latest smoke conditions.

Safety: The health and safety of firefighters and the public are always the first priority. Information on air quality and protecting your health can be found online at the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) website. The Forest Stewards Guild offers a HEPA Filter Loan Program that are available on a first come/first served basis. Additional information on air filters and the HEPA loan program is posted at

Update 11 p.m. 5/10/23: The Las Tusas fire has grown to 1,000 acres and is at zero percent containment. Multiple structures have been burned and evacuations are still in place.  

Upon initial attack, the fire was running significantly and managed to jump NM 266. Crews have been working on structure protection and stopping the fire’s potential spread. Simultaneously, crews are working to contain all flanks of the fire. Darkness brought a decrease in windspeed and temperatures, which is proving beneficial to firefighting efforts. Multiple resources and personnel are on the scene, and the exact number will be updated once that information comes in.  

Tomorrow morning, a Type 3 Incident Management Team will assume management of the fire at 0600. Multi Mission Aircraft has been ordered from Colorado to provide infrared and video intelligence. This will be the last notification of the evening.   


Update 7:20 p.m. 5/10/23: The Las Tusas fire is located near HWY 94, west of Sapello in San Miguel County and was discovered around 4 p.m. this afternoon. The fire is running through pinon/juniper, mixed conifer, ponderosa and heavy grass. It is estimated at 100-200 acres and the cause is under investigation.  

A Type-3 incident management team has been ordered. Structures have been burned, and multiple structures are threatened. Evacuations are recommended for residents along HWY 94. Forestry Division, local agencies and Forestry Service are on scene and engaged. Dozers are on scene putting in containment lines, and crews are working on structure protection in the surrounding area. 

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