Current situation

Winter and spring see lots of controlled burns in Oregon to eliminate piles of woody debris left over after logging or thinning. Embers buried in the ashes of these pile burns can sometimes reignite even days after a fire appears to be out, especially if winds blow away ashy debris. The same winds can then fan smoldering embers back to life. That's why it's a good idea to keep checking old pile burns to ensure no hot spots have rekindled.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Fire update, Aug. 22, 2011

The 274-acre Theimer No. 2 Fire is burning along Highway 395 in Harney County. Reported at 2 p.m. on Sunday, the fire is now fully lined and firefighters began mop-up Monday morning. However, no percentage of containment has been announced since the fire is still active. The human-caused blaze started on Harney County property and eventually spread to adjacent Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S. Forest Service lands. BLM is the lead agency on the suppression effort, with Oregon Dept. of Forestry firefighters assisting. Travelers are advised of slowdowns on Highway 395 due to fire equipment traffic. Oregon Dept. of Transportation is guiding motorists through the area via pilot car.

A seven-acre fire in Yamhill County reported Saturday has claimed the life of a Carlton, Oregon, man. Firefighters responding to a report of smoke coming from a field arrived on scene to find Streeter Luke Roy, 80, badly burned. He was transported to a Portland hospital where he later died. The fire was fully contained and placed in patrol status Sunday morning. Oregon Dept. of Forestry investigators said their initial examination of the scene indicated the fire may have resulted from Mr. Roy injecting fire into gopher holes. However, the ODF investigation into the fire cause is still in progress. Local fire teams are investigating the cause of the fatality.

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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

Cool, wet weather in the winter of 2016-17 ended Oregon's long drought and left a thick mountain snowpack. It didn't take long for that to melt and vegetation to dry out due to a series of heatwaves and a prolonged stretch of dry weather over the summer. As forest fuels dried, fires started and spread, many from lands adjacent to those protected by ODF, such as the Chetco Bar Fire in Curry County. That one fire accounted for 46% of the 47,537 acres of land protected by ODF which burned in 2017. Of fires originating on ODF-protected land, 95% were put out at less than 10 acres.

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.