The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Unoccupied trailer burns in Clovis


March 27, 2018

David Grieder

No injuries were reported in Sunday night's fire near Clovis' railroad tracks downtown.

CLOVIS — Don't be fooled by any recent drizzle; fire hazards are still high, as evidenced by two weekend blazes that damaged vehicles but left no injuries in Clovis.

Four engines responded Saturday night to a fire in the back yard of a house on Cameo Street that burned an 18-wheeler, a pickup truck and a tree and spread to a neighbor's fence line before firefighters had it under control.

The damage only took about half an hour, with officials receiving the call at 9:25 p.m. and getting the fire "knocked down" by 9:52 p.m., said Clovis Fire Chief Mike Nolen. Firefighters stayed on scene at the property between 10th and 11th streets till close to midnight extinguishing the remaining hot spots.

"We don't know what started it yet. That was kind of a crazy call," Nolen said. "Believe it or not (the property) was not that big, but it did have an 18-wheeler truck in the back yard."

The cause remains under investigation and there were no reported injuries, which is also true of a fire the following evening near Clovis' railroad tracks downtown.

Battalion Chief Dale Hand said Sunday that officials were notified of a fire on a lot with a trailer just before 6 p.m., south of the intersection of Axtell and East 1st Street. Firefighters had controlled the blaze within 30 minutes and the damages were confined to debris in the lot surrounding the white trailer where officials say they believe the fire started.

The area is frequented by transients.

"We're certain it started in the trailer," Nolen said Monday. They're still not sure how, but he said he believed the trailer "was being lived in" at the time of the incident.

Some tires that burned in the lot are the likely source of the large column of black smoke that emerged from the scene.

The county-wide burn ban initiated with the declaration last week of a "fire danger emergency" remains in effect, and Monday's drizzle doesn't change that at all, Nolen said.

"That just doesn't even matter one lick," he said. "The wind that we get after the little bits of rain is drying things out as fast as we get any type of moisture on it."

Nolen urged the public to stay alert to areas around their residences with fire loads, such as dry weeds and grass.

"Just due to this drought that we're in, all of the weeds and grasses contain no moisture. Everything's at that point where it takes very little to light off," he said. "Hopefully with such good weather that we're having, everyone can manage to get out around their place like I did this weekend and get some of those weeds."


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