Current situation

With fire season ended, most burning in Oregon forestland in the late fall consists of controlled burns to eliminate piles of woody debris left over after logging or thinning. The timing of such burns is carefully regulated to minimize the chance of smoke entering heavily populated areas.

































Friday, June 19, 2015

Douglas to tighten fire restrictions June 24

Due to the heightened fire danger, the Douglas Forest Protective Association (DFPA) will impose public use restrictions, also known as a “Regulated-Use Closure,” effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, June 24. The Regulated-Use Closure will be in effect for all private, county, state and Bureau of Land Management lands protected by DFPA. The Industrial Fire Precaution level (IFPL) will remain at IFPL 1.

While the Regulated-Use Closure doesn’t prohibit public access to the forest, it does restrict certain fire-prone activities. The following provisions are set to help prevent wildfires:

Smoking is prohibited while traveling through wildland areas, except in enclosed vehicles on improved roads.
 
Open fires are prohibited, including campfires, charcoal fires, cooking fires, and warming fires, except at designated campgrounds.  Portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed.  DFPA-designated campgrounds include:

·         BLM campgrounds: Cavitt Creek, Eagle View, Lone Pine, Millpond, Rock Creek, Susan Creek and Tyee.

·         Douglas County Parks Campgrounds: Amacher Park, Douglas County Fairgrounds, Pass Creek, Stanton Park, Chief Miwaleta and Whistler’s Bend.
Chainsaw use is prohibited between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. in areas subject to Industrial Fire Precaution Levels 1 and 2.  Chainsaw use is permitted at all other hours if the following firefighting equipment is present with each operating saw: one shovel and one operational 8 ounce or larger fire extinguisher. In addition, a fire watch is required for at least one hour following the use of each saw.
Chainsaw use is prohibited in areas subject to Industrial Fire Precaution Levels 3 and 4.
The use of motor vehicles, including motorcycles and ATV’s, are prohibited, except on improved roads or for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.
 
Possession of the following firefighting equipment is required while traveling in a motorized vehicle, except on federal and state highways, county roads, and driveways: one shovel and one gallon of water or one fully charged and operational 2.5 pound or larger ABC fire extinguisher. ATV’s and motorcycles must be equipped with one operational 2.5 pound or larger ABC type fire extinguisher.
 
The use of fireworks is prohibited.
The cutting, grinding and welding of metal in wildland areas is prohibited between 12 p.m. and 8 p.m. Cutting, grinding and welding of metal is permitted at all other hours, if conducted in a cleared area and with a water supply present.
The mowing of dried and cured grass with power driven equipment is prohibited, between the hours of 12 p.m. and 8 p.m., except for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.
Any electric fence controller in use shall be: 1) Listed by a nationally recognized testing laboratory or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services; and 2) operated in compliance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
In addition, the following activities are prohibited under ORS 477.512 during a declared fire season:
  • The use of exploding targets  
  • The use of sky lanterns
  • The use of tracer ammunition or any bullet with a pyrotechnic charge in its base.

In addition to DFPA’s Regulated-Use Closures, private industrial landowners have the ability to add additional restrictions or complete closures to their land holdings throughout the summer due to the fire danger. Recreational forest users are advised to check with the landowners for the locations they plan to recreate on, before they head to the woods.


As of June 19, DFPA has suppressed 43 fires which have burned 248 acres. The number of fires and acres burned are up from the current 10-year average (January 1 – June 19), which is 14 fires burning 47 acres.

For more information about public or industrial fire restrictions on DFPA protected land, call the 24-hr fire information line at 541-672-0379 or visit www.dfpa.net

News contact: 

Kyle Reed
Fire Prevention Specialist
Douglas Forest Protective Association
Office: (541) 672-6507 ext. 136

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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

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, in the summer of 2017 a series of heatwaves and a prolonged stretch of dry weather created conditions that dried forest fuels, allowing fires to start and spread. The result was more than a thousand fires on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry.Ninety-five percent of these 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.