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

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

After conversations between the Oregon Department of Forestry and the State of Alaska, Alaska has requested personnel from the Oregon Department of Forestry to take command of the East Volkmar Fire, which is located approximately 25 miles east of Delta Junction, AK. A "short team" comprised of members from the Oregon Department of Forestry's Fire Team 2, is planned for dispatch on Thursday, June 2.

The positions included in this short team are: an Incident Commander; an Interagency Liaison, a Safety Officer, an Operations Section Chief, an Operations Division Supervisor, two Air Support positions, an Operations Section Chief, two Division Supervisors, a Logistics Section Chief, a Services Branch Director, a Support Branch Director, a Group Support Unit Leader, a Communications Technician, a Plans Sections Chief and Assistant, and a Finance Section Chief.

Alaska requested this specific organization based on the objectives of the fire, the current fire environment, and the logistical challenges of suppressing fire in the environment where it is located. The assignment is a compact order including 14 days on assignment, with two days of travel on either end.

More information on the East Volkmar Fire can be found on the national incident information website, Inciweb, at

Oregon Department of Forestry personnel participate in wildfire suppression activities out of state as a form of mutual aid. Alaska is in the middle of their fire season, which generally ends around the time that Oregon's fire season often really starts up - usually in July. Personnel from the Oregon Department of Forestry dispatched to fire assignments out of state are paid for by the state and the fire receiving the resources, so out-of-state fire assignments are accomplished at no cost to the state of Oregon. In addition to the mutual aid benefits from these dispatches, department personnel receive valuable firefighting experience and the opportunity to maintain or expand their own training and qualifications - truly a win/win situation for both states. Before considering out-of-state dispatches of any kind, the department carefully reviews the situation and resources within Oregon to minimize any possible risk of diminished resources in the event of need in our own state. Oregon Department of Forestry Fire Teams 1 and 3 are ready for dispatch here in Oregon, with Team 3 currently "up" in the rotation.

Jeri Chase
Oregon Department of Forestry Agency Affairs
Work Phone: 503-945-7201
Fire Duty Offier Pager: 503-370-0403

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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:

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.


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.