Current situation

Fires in the Garner Complex in Josephine County have burned close to a 1,000 acres since Sunday. ODF Incident Management Team 2 has taken command of the Complex to allow the Southwest Oregon District to focus on dozens of other lightning-sparked wildfires. While temperatures in many parts of Oregon won't be quite as hot today, conditions are drier than normal for this time of year. The U.S. Drought Monitor reports that 99% of Oregonians live in areas that are abnormally dry or in moderate drought, with southeast Oregon already in severe drought.

Many ODF districts and forest protective associations have raised their fire danger level and tightened restrictions on activities linked to fire starts. Check ODF's fire restrictions and closures web page for the latest details at http://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Fire/Pages/Restrictions.aspx





Monday, August 2, 2010

Smokey: Go ahead and bake him a cake, but no candles please

Two-thirds of the folks who took last week's SWOFIRE poll about Smokey Bear's age were correct. The fire-preventing bear turns 66 next Monday. Smokey was "born" Aug. 9 1944, which is the date the first Smokey Bear fire prevention poster was created.

The beloved bear is a shared icon between the US Forest Service, National Association of State Foresters and the Ad Council. Commercial artist Albert Staehle is created with creating the Smokey image as a public education campaign for the Forest Service. By the way, lest you think about using Smokey for an advertisement, the Bear is protected by federal law. Smokey Bear's name and image are proprietary to the three entities (which includes State Forestry departments) under the Smokey Bear Act of 1952 (16 USC 580 and 18 USC 711).

Need ideas about preventing wildfires close to home? Check out the Keep Oregon Green website, www.keeporegongreen.org/

Kevin Weeks - Oregon Department of Forestry (many thanks to Brian Ballou with SWOFIRE for the poll question)

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Comments and questions

The purpose of this blog is to provide breaking news about wildfire activity on the forestlands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry. We invite you to post questions or comments you have about current wildfires. Please keep your posts civil and free of profanity. You are also welcome to contact us by email at: information@odf.state.or.us.

Current wildfire info

National weather forecasters are predicting the summer of 2018 will see above average temperatures and below average rainfall. Drought has already been declared in a number of counties in eastern and southern Oregon, with northwest Oregon also unusually dry for June. These conditions set the stage for potentially large, fast-moving wildfires.

What we do

Protection jurisdiction
The Oregon Dept. of Forestry protects 16 million acres of private and public forestlands from wildfire. This includes all private forestlands in Oregon as well as state and local government-owned forests, along with 2.8 million acres of federal Bureau of Land Management lands in the western part of the state. In total there are about 30.4 million acres of forest in Oregon.

Fire suppression policy
The department fights fire aggressively, seeking to put out most fires at 10 acres or smaller. This approach minimizes damage to the timber resource and fish and wildlife habitat, and protects lives and property. It also saves money. While suppressing large fires can cost millions of dollars, economic and environmental damage from wildfires can be many times greater.

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About Me

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Oregon Dept. of Forestry's public information officers in Salem, Ore., maintain this blog. During the wildfire season, we spend much of our time reporting on fires and firefighting to news media and the public.