Thursday, September 27, 2012

Morning update - September 27, 2012


ODF The Dalles Unit -- The Milepost 66 fire burning 2 miles east of Hood River has covered 70 acres and is 15 percent contained on Thursday morning. Lack of strong winds assisted the 110 fire personnel working the fire, and efforts are being focused Thursday on the southern side of the fire. Boundaries have been established on the west and east sides of the fire. Two helicopters are assisting with air support.

The eastbound lanes of Interstate 84 have fully reopened, but motorists are urged to use caution in the area due to fire vehicle traffic and the visual distraction of helicopters dipping bucket loads of water close to the highway.

The fire crosses several ownership types, and resources from ODF, the U.S. Forest Service, and multiple local fire districts are assigned to the fire. The fire is burning along the Mark Hatfield trail between Hood River and Mosier; the trail is closed during the fire response. Cause of the fire is under investigation.

ODF Grants Pass Unit -- The 26-acre Grave Creek fire in Josephine County 11 miles southwest of Glendale was 95 percent contained by Wednesday afternoon and fire managers anticipate the fire being fully contained today. Fire began Sunday evening, cause of which remains under investigation.

ODF Grants Pass Unit – The 32-acre Rancheria fire reported Sunday is now fully contained. Fifty fire personnel are working mop up on the fire Thursday.

FIRES ON OTHER LANDS

The Pole Creek Fire, burning six miles southwest of Sisters, is 26,285 acres and 80 percent contained. Deschutes County officials have lifted the Level 2 pre-evacuation alert for residents in the Crossroads and Edgington/Remuda areas. More information on this fire is available on Inciweb at: http://www.inciweb.org/incident/3244

The Bald Mountain Fire, which started on September 18 and is burning 12 miles southwest of Enterprise in the Eagle Cap Wilderness, has been mapped at just over 1,000 acres and is uncontained. Trail closures are in place and visitors are advised to contact the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest, who is managing this fire, prior to entering the area.

The Rooper fire burning three miles north of Antelope on Prineville District BLM lands was reported Tuesday afternoon. The fire in grass and brush is 600 acres and 10 percent contained. No further growth of the fire is anticipated.
For information on wildfires in all jurisdictions within Oregon, go to the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center website, www.nwccweb.us/  - or to the national Incident Information System website, www.inciweb.org/state/38

Kevin Weeks - ODF Public Affairs Office

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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: information@odf.state.or.us.

Current wildfire info

A rainy September ended fire season in all ODF districts. Oregonians are urged always to exercise fire safety in the forest and the wildland-urban interface.

While lightning often ignites the largest wildfires, human carelessness accounts for 69 percent of all fire starts on the 16 million acres of forestland protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry.

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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. There are about 30.4 million total 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. Suppression of large fires can run into millions of dollars.

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