Rico Fire: Around 421 acres burned north of Silver City

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SILVER CITY, N.M. — A wildfire is burning about 7 miles north of Silver City. It is now known as the Rico Fire.

The fire is around 421 acres in size, burning pine timber, oak brush, and grass. It reportedly started on the Bureau of Land Management’s land Tuesday.

The Pinos Altos Volunteer Fire Rescue says the fire hasn’t burned any structures. They worked all night and into the morning with Forest Service crews and other agencies and resources, including air tankers.

Local law enforcement evacuated residents north of Bear Creek Cabins and along NM-15.

The Grant County Emergency Manager has opened an evacuation center located at: Grant County Business and Conference Center, 3031 Highway 180 East, in Silver City.

Evacuated SMALL animals should be taken to: High Desert Humane Society, 3050 Cougar Way in Silver City.

Evacuated LARGE animals should be taken to: Southwest Horseman’s Association Arena off of U.S. 180 on Caballero Road, east of Silver City.

The voluntary evacuation Tuesday night for the village of Pinos Altos was reportedly precautionary.

Heavy smoke is likely going to settle into the valley around Silver City overnight. Officials say residents should close their windows and smoke-sensitive people should limit time outdoors.

The cause of the fire is still unknown. There are around 170 personnel on the ground as the fire remains 0% contained.

New Mexico Highway 15 is open between Silver City and Pinos Altos.

This is a developing story. Stay with KOB 4 Eyewitness News and KOB.com for updates.