Current situation

Fire season on ODF-protected land has officially ended in all of Oregon as cooler temperatures and moister conditions settle over much of the state. With the end of wildfire season in Oregon, firefighting resources are now more available. As a result, several public and private engines and crews have been dispatched to California to assist with the devastating wildfires there.































Thursday, September 4, 2014

Oregon Dept of Forestry Fire Update for Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014

New fires
No new fires 10 acres or larger were reported on lands protected by ODF in the past 24 hours.

Current large fires:

Lost Hubcap Fire
The Lost Hubcap Fire reported August 29 near Monument  is now at 87 percent containment.

Last night was the final night shift for this incident. The resources assigned to today’s day shift will continue working after the team leaves. The incoming Type 3 Team will shadow Team 2 members today for a smooth transition.

Team 2 will transfer the command of the ODF Lost Hubcap Fire to an ODF Type 3 Team (IC Flock) working out of the Oregon Department of Forestry John Day Unit Office. At briefing this morning, ODF John Day Unit Forester Rob Pentzer expressed his thanks “for making my job easy and doing a great job for the landowners.”

Official transition will occur on Thursday Sept. 4 at 7:00 p.m. The Transition Team will work to extinguish any remaining smokes and recover equipment.

The local ODF fire staff will patrol the fire and monitor for smokes frequently throughout the remainder of fire season. 100 percent containment is expected at 7:00 pm. today.

After today, all media and public inquiries should contact John Day Interagency Dispatch Center at 541-575-3107.

Deception Complex

The lightning-caused Deception Complex (USFS) that started August 12 two miles west of the community of Oakridge is estimated at 2,327 acres. The complex is now 55 percent contained.

A red flag warning is in effect today through Saturday due to a triple threat of dry relative humidity, gusty easterly winds, and unstable atmosphere conditions (Haines Index 6).  Increased fire activity and active fire behavior is expected. A convective column build-up is possible this afternoon through early evening as the fire actively burns and firefighters continue with burn out operations.  Fire activity will be active and visible at night from nearby communities.

Yesterday and during the last two night shifts, firefighters have successfully completed burnout on the northeast and eastern containment lines. Today, aerial ignition may utilize “ping pong” devices which ignite upon hitting the ground.  The eastern flank of the fire is located closest to structures and Highway 58, and therefore, is the priority area for strengthening containment lines. Topographic features and geographic locations have been pre-determined for the safe use of fire retardant drops in the effort to avoid live streams and resource values at risk. 

Additional smoke will be generated as firefighters generate more active fire behavior and progress with burnout operations.  An air quality monitoring station has been installed on the roof of the Oakridge High School to determine the level of allowable outdoor activity for students as smoke levels increase.

Once the inversion over Oakridge and Westfir breaks this morning, mixing air may cause smoke to impact Oakridge and vicinity.  As east winds develop, however, air quality is expected to improve as smoke is pushed toward the southwest.

Information from smoke monitors in the Oakridge area is incorporated in the daily Deception Complex smoke forecast which is posted on the Lane Regional Air Protection Agency website at http://www.lrapa.org or http://oregonsmoke.blogspot.com

Deception Creek Mobile Home Park, Middle Fork Ranger Station and houses along La Duke Road remain under a Level 1 evacuation notice. Motorists traveling Highway 58 are advised to proceed with caution near the community of Oakridge as students and teachers return to school this week amidst continuing heavy fire-related traffic.

Last night, additional engines and crews were added to the structural protection group to patrol, monitor, and take suppression actions as needed along the north and northeast flanks of the fire. Firefighters also continued with burnout operations during last night’s shift along the eastern flank of the fire, completing another .5 mile of burnout parallel to the fire line.

Today, crews will continue to strengthen fire lines along the eastern flank of the fire, nearest to homes and Highway 58, by continuing to complete an approximate 2-mile section of line of burnout utilizing a road, a ridge line and a tree plantation to check the fire.  The objective is to consume ground fuels adjacent to constructed fire lines while maintaining the fire to a low level of intensity. Helicopter water bucket drops are also being directed by crews on the ground in order to hold the fire within the control line.

Air Operations Summary 

Currently, four heavy helicopters, a medium heli-torch helicopter, three light helicopters and an air attack platform are assigned to the Deception Complex.  A heavy Sky Crane Helicopter has been ordered and is expected to arrive today.   

●       A temporary flight restriction (TFR) is in place over the Deception Fires 272, 274 and 278; a military training Route (R346) has been closed due to the TFR.

●      Oakridge Airport is closed to civilian air traffic; currently serving as the helibase for the Deception Complex.

Willamette National Forest Area & Trail Closures:

●     There are two closures on the Willamette NF association with the Deception Complex. The Deception Fire closure is an area, road and trail closure that currently includes the Lawler and Deception Trails and the Patterson Mountain Road; the Staley Fire closure includes an area and road closure.   

Umpqua National Forest Closure:

●     There is an area, road and trail closure southwest of the Deception Complex. Forest Road 17 remains open to Spirit Falls. 

Check Inciweb for full closure information, including maps: http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4093/ or visit the Willamette National Forest at http://www.fs.usda.gov/willamette or the Umpqua National Forest http://www.fs.usda.gov/umpqua                                                                                                                    
COOPERATING AGENCIES & PARTNERS: Willamette National Forest, Oregon Department of Forestry, Umpqua National Forest, Lane County, Oakridge/Hazeldell Fire Department, Lowell Rural Fire Protection District, Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon State Police, Bureau of Reclamation, Lane Regional Air Protection Agency.

For more information: 541- 782-5359  http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4093/

 
ABOUT THIS UPDATE

ODF is responsible for fire protection on about 16 million acres of private and state-owned forest and grazing land, and certain other public forestlands including those owned by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management in western Oregon. Fires may cross ownerships, and because of the need to share firefighting resources, agencies work closely together.

This update focuses primarily on firefighting activity on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected lands involving fires 10 acres or larger in size or of other significance. It also reports on ODF’s major actions as a partner with other agencies.

FIRES ON OTHER JURISDICTIONS IN OREGON

More information on these fires can be found at: http://nwccweb.us/index.aspx and http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/

Statewide air quality index readings are available at http://www.deq.state.or.us/aqi/index.aspx.


OTHER FIRE INFORMATION & LINKS

ODF maintains a blog at http://wildfireoregondeptofforestry.blogspot.com/. It includes breaking news on wildfires that occur on ODF’s fire protection jurisdiction and also fires on other lands that potentially threaten , along with current fire statistics, and a frequently updated Twitter feed at https://twitter.com/ORDeptForestry.

For information on wildfires in other jurisdictions within Oregon, go to the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center website, http://www.nwccweb.us/ and to the national Incident Information System website at http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/. Statewide air quality index readings are available at http://www.deq.state.or.us/aqi/index.aspx.

NEWS MEDIA

News media may call the Fire Information Duty Officer, (see below), 24/7 for fire information. The duty officer will call back promptly. Media may also call the Oregon Department of Forestry headquarters office, 503-945-7200, weekdays during business hours.
Cynthia Orlando, 503-510-7972 Through Sept. 4

 

 

Cynthia Orlando | Public Information Officer & Certified arborist

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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

Cool, wet weather in the winter of 2016-17 ended Oregon's long drought and left a thick snowpack at higher elevations which will take some time to melt. However, even in non-drought years Oregon's warm, dry summers create conditions that allow for fire to start and spread. In an average summer firefighters still see almost a thousand fires on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry.



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.