Local News


Fire-detecting cameras help to detect wildfires in Nevada

Posted at 5:19 PM, Apr 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-25 21:02:44-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — As more than 21,000 acres of dry, drought land burn in Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado, firefighters are on alert.

ALERT Wildfire is providing some help with mountain top sites set up with fire spotting cameras, monitoring severe wild fires.

Those cameras are sitting on more than twenty mountain tops in Nevada, including Mt. Charleston, Black Mountain and Angel Peak.

"ALERT wildfire, which is really in a sense, a virtual fire fire tower or a fire lookout tower of the 21st century, not only developed at the University of Reno, but by seismologists. So what we did is add fire cameras onto our system and develop software package that allows firefighters to essentially hunt for fires and confirm them."

These cameras are capable of capturing the birth of a brush fire that could very quickly turn into a raging wildfire.

In 2013, the Carpenter One fire on Mt. Charleston lasted for eight weeks and burned over 28,000 acres, leaving the valley shrouded in smoke and with poor air quality.

"The issue with wildfire smoke is that it can happen hundreds of miles away," said Kevin J. MacDonald from the Clark County Department of Environment & Sustainability. "But when it blows into Clark County, it can cause some health impacts for people who have breathing sensitivity."

When this happens, MacDonald says to keep windows and doors closed. Also, change your air filter if necessary.

Learn more about ALERT Wildfire here.