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Resilience and resolve

Dear Friend,

On Friday, Senator Ben Ray Luján and I met with families, local and Tribal leaders, first responders, and emergency operation commanders in Roswell, Ruidoso, and the Mescalero Apache Reservation,allimpacted by the South Fork and Salt Fires that have ravagedbeloved New Mexico communities.

Witnessing the loss and devastation brought on by these fires was sobering. Reflecting on my conversations with evacuated families, I am floored by their resilience and resolve.

Ruidoso Mayor

PHOTO: U.S. Senators Martin Heinrich and Ben Ray Luján talk with Village of Ruidoso Mayor Lynn Crawford about the community’s response to the South Fork and Salt Fires, June 21, 2024.

Our visit came right after we announced that President Biden approved a Major Disaster Declaration for Lincoln County and the Mescalero Apache Tribe. Today, the Disaster Declaration was amended to also include Otero County.


Individual and households impacted by the fires do NOT need to wait to return home or to hear from your insurance company to apply for FEMA assistance. The quickest way to apply for recovery assistance is to visit now or call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 to apply. More information here.

FEMA Graphic

For timely and accurate information from federal and state agencies in New Mexico on active fires, restrictions, and evacuation orders from all around our state, please go to You can also visit the South Fork and Salt Fires Resources Pageon my website for information on evacuation sites, re-entry information from the Village of Ruidoso, FEMA assistance, and other helpful links.If there is any way that I can be of assistance to you or your family, please don’t hesitate to call my office at (505) 346-6601.

Together, we will do everything we can to keep each other safe and recover from these fires.



United States Senator