Witnesses say a fast-moving fire near the Nevada-California line has destroyed at least two homes as it forces evacuations and sends up huge plumes of black smoke.
The fire in the Topaz Ranch Estates area of south Douglas County broke out Tuesday afternoon.
Witnesses at the scene also say several outbuildings have been destroyed. Rural homes in the area are on a hillside that leads to the Pine Nut Mountains.
A dispatcher with the Sierra Front Wildfire Cooperators says Douglas County has requested air tankers and assistance from other agencies.
Winds have been steady and gusting throughout the day across the region that has seen very little moisture all winter, leaving vegetation dry and extremely flammable.