Fire followed by flood, and now what? Lawyers to the rescue

LAS VEGAS, N.M. — About a dozen people listened with somber expressions last week as a Colorado-based wildfire expert sporting a bolo tie talked about government liability — and how his firm could help victims recover damages caused by Hermits Peak/Calf Canyon Fire.

After the presentation, the audience — most had lost either land or homes in a disaster that offered a one-two punch of searing fire, then ravaging floods — huddled in small groups. They shared stories of the recent past and concerns for the future.

“I bought the land because it was beautiful,” one man said in a ballroom adjacent to the Las Vegas plaza. “You can give me a million dollars, but I can’t rebuild the forest.”

Assessing the damage

‘I need to find the tools’

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