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Our New Mexico Fire Lawyers Can Get You Compensation for Damages From the Nogal Canyon and McBride Fires

If you or a loved one have experienced a Nogal Canyon or McBride Fire evacuation, property damage or loss, or any injury, hospitalization, wrongful death, psychological trauma, or other long-term health issue caused by these or other New Mexico wildfires, the expert fire attorneys at Singleton Schreiber have partnered with New Mexico law firm Payne & Jimenez to help victims of these New Mexico fires recover the fair and full compensation to move forward with their lives.

Two Killed, Hundreds of Homes Burned after McBride and Nogal Canyon Fires Sparked by Downed Power Lines and Strong Winds

Two people died and more than 4,500 people were evacuated from their homes as a result of the McBride Fire in Ruidoso, New Mexico, which burned over 6,100 acres and more than 200 homes after a strong wind event in drought conditions downed power lines and trees in the area.

The exact cause of the fire is still being investigated. Studies are also underway to determine the long-term effects of the fire on the soil and local ecosystem, including any downstream consequences and future risks to the community.

The New Mexico mountain village and surrounding area in the northern Lincoln National Forest saw spring wind gusts as high as 90 mph as the fire ripped through the forested canyons and destroyed homes and structures in the Sierra Blanca Mountains.

While the winds delayed fire crews from attacking the blaze from overhead and surveying the size of the fire, planes were able to fly over the area the next day as winds subsided, according to reports.

The fire came a few hundred feet from Ruidoso’s main street and less than half a mile from the county hospital before it was contained.

Map of McBride Fire NM

Thousands Lose Power in New Mexico Wildfires

The McBride Fire knocked out power to more than 18,000 people, after it started in a residential neighborhood and then moved on to more remote areas, according to officials. It was sparked on April 12, and the town was evacuated later that day. The McBride fire was 95% contained as of April 29.

About 60 percent of the people in the town who were evacuated were able to move back in on April 15, three days after the blaze broke out. A few dozen people were still without power at that time, according to Public Service Company of New Mexico, the electric provider in the area.

All evacuations were lifted by April 17.

On April 27, the U.S. Forest Service announced that it was placing the Lincoln National Forest under Stage 2 fire restrictions, just a week after going into Stage 1 restrictions.

The Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) is currently performing a rapid assessment of burned watersheds to identify imminent post-wildfire threats to human life and safety, property, and critical natural or cultural resources on National Forest System lands and “take immediate actions to implement emergency stabilization measures before the first post-fire damaging events.”

The BAER assessment will take approximately two weeks to complete their burned area assessment.

Nogal Canyon Fire Ignited 10 Miles Away From McBride Fire

At the same time, other fires have been burning in the state, including the nearby Nogal Canyon fire, which was caused by downed power lines. That fire destroyed six homes and eight outbuildings after Public Service Company power lines went down on April 12, the same day the McBride Fire ignited.

The Nogal Canyon blaze sparked about 10 miles to the northwest of Ruidoso, where the much larger McBride Fire had evacuated more than half of the town. The Nogal Canyon area was also evacuated.

Residents whose property sustained damage in either fire are encouraged to call the Ruidoso Community Development Office at (575) 258-4343.

Nogal Canyon and McBride Fire map
NMFireInfo.com

Elderly Couple Dies Trying to Evacuate From McBride Fire in Ruidoso, New Mexico

The elderly couple who died in the blaze were trying to evacuate, according to reports.

They were found on April 14, two days after the start of the fire, at their burned home in the northeast section of Ruidoso after police were told by family members that they were unaccounted for after attempting to evacuate, according to a statement from New Mexico State Police.

No other deaths or injuries have been reported in either of the fires in the area.

A History of Wildfires in Ruidoso

The town of Ruidoso was also where the most destructive wildfire in the history of the State of New Mexico occurred in 2012. That fire, the Little Bear Fire, burned more than 240 homes and 70 square miles (more than 44,000 acres) of forest after a lightning strike.

Ruidoso is a resort town in the Sierra Blanca mountains, about 135 miles southeast of Albuquerque. It is home to a year-round population of about 8,000, but sees an influx of people each summer, expanding to about 25,000 during the warmest months of the year, as people from nearby hotter climates flock there to escape the heat.

If You Have Experienced Any of the Following, You May Be Eligible for McBride Fire Compensation:

  • Wrongful Death from Fire or Smoke
  • Hospitalization
  • Serious Burns
  • Other Serious Personal Injury
  • Long-Term Health Effects
  • Psychological Impact
  • Home Loss
  • Structure Loss
  • Damage to Animals/Pets
  • Damage to Timber/Trees
  • Erosion
  • Vegetation Loss
  • Damage to Landscaping
  • Significant Property Damage
  • Economic Loss
  • Agriculture Loss
  • Damage to Infrastructure
  • Business Loss
  • Business Interruption
  • Underinsured Property
  • FEMA Assistance
  • Utility & Other Service Interruptions
  • Housing Market Impacts

Frequently Asked Questions

The McBride Fire burned 6,159 acres in just a couple of days, with most of the damage taking place in the town of Ruidoso, NM, in the first days after the fire ignited.

 

After starting on the afternoon of April 12, 2022, the McBride Fire and the Nogal Canyon Fire - just 10 miles to the northwest of Ruidoso - were sparked under drought conditions during a severe wind event, in which gusts as high as 90 mph knocked down trees and power lines operated by Public Service Company of New Mexico.

The Nogal Canyon Fire burned 412 acres in the Sierra Blanca Mountains, about 10 miles to the northwest of Ruidoso, New Mexico, where the larger McBride fire destroyed more than 200 homes at the same time.

The two fires started the same day about 10 miles apart from each other, but never joined. They were both sparked under a high wind event that downed power lines in the area in severe drought conditions.

In two days the McBride Fire had destroyed 207 homes in Ruidoso, New Mexico, and two people, an elderly couple, died in the blaze as they were attempting to evacuate. At the same time, the smaller Nogal Canyon fire destroyed at least six homes and eight outbuildings about 10 miles to the northwest.

The official cause of the McBride Fire is under investigation, but Inciweb has reported the Nogal Canyon Fire was caused by downed power lines. The two fires started the same day about 10 miles apart from each other, but never joined. They were both sparked under a high wind event that downed power lines in the area among severe drought conditions.

If you or a loved one were affected by the McBride Fire or the Nogal Canyon Fire, contact the experienced wildfire attorneys at Singleton Schreiber and Payne and Jimenez to understand your legal options.

Homeowners, renters, business owners, and others may have valid legal claims to substantial compensation for property damage and property loss caused by these New Mexico wildfires.

If you’re a renter, you can join a class-action lawsuit — if one is filed — against the utility company seeking compensation for damages from the McBride Fire or other recent New Mexico wildfires. 

 

Whether you rent or own your property, you shouldn’t pay the price for wildfires caused by negligent power companies. If a utility company’s equipment sparks a fire that damages your property, you deserve to be reimbursed for your losses.

Read more about rented home loss from wildfires here.

Although there likely will be hundreds of individuals who suffer damages, we handle each case individually. Our goal is to recover the maximum amount of legal damages for each individual based on each individual’s unique losses. That amount can range from tens of thousands of dollars to tens of millions. PNM has millions of dollars available in insurance funds and can borrow additional money in order to pay all damages caused by this fire if their equipment is found to be the cause.

 

If you have experienced property damage or loss caused by the McBride Fire or another wildfire, or if you or a loved one has incurred hospitalization, severe burns or other physical injuries, wrongful death, psychological trauma, or other long-term health issues, the experienced wildfire attorneys at Singleton Schreiber and Payne and Jimenez can help you recover the fair and full compensation you need to move forward with your life.

Schedule your free claim evaluation and find your McBride Fire lawyer today.