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.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Douglas Complex update - Aug. 23, 2013 morning

Oregon Department of Forestry Incident Management Team 1
August 23, 2013, 7:30 a.m.
Contact: 541-832-0136

Current Situation:
As the fires within the Douglas Complex get closer to being contained, crews that have completed their assignment are being sent home to rest up. Today, 958 firefighters will continue mopping up the Rabbit Mountain and Dad’s Creek fires.

One task of the crews on the fireline is to find trees that are unsafe to work near, and cut them down. Teams of fallers hike to wherever firefighters find these hazardous trees, and tackle the tricky task of putting the partially burned trees on the ground.

Felling badly burned trees is not simple. The trees may be burned two-thirds of the way through at the base, halfway up the stem, or near the top. Or all three. Usually, the hazard trees are teetering like they’re about to fall, but stubbornly refuse to. Firefighters cannot work near trees that may crack and fall at any second.

But once the hazardous trees have been put on the ground, firefighters can safely resume their work, mopping up the hot spots inside the fireline.

Road closures
For detailed information about the road closures in the Douglas Complex area in Douglas County, contact the BLM district office in Roseburg at 541-440-4930.

For road closure information on the Josephine County side of the Douglas Complex, call the BLM’s Grants Pass office at 541-471-6500.

Maps of the road closure areas are posted online at:

Complex at a Glance

Size: 48,679 acres

Fires in the Complex:
Rabbit Mountain Fire: 23,952 acres
Dad’s Creek Fire: 24,464 acres
Farmer Gulch Fire: 249 acres
Misc small fires: 14 acres

Cause: Lightning on July 26

Containment: 85%

Expected Containment: 9/01/2013

Crews and Equipment:
Crews: 19 Type 2
Helicopters: Two Type 2 (Medium Lift)
Two Type 3 (Light)
Fire engines: 32
Bulldozers: 9
Water Tenders: 10
Total personnel: 958

Estimated Cost: $49.8 million

Local fire activity and fire prevention information online:
Douglas Forest Protective Association
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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.


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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.