2015 another severe fire season

A cool, wet winter and heavy snowpack delayed the start of fire season in much of western and northeastern Oregon. However, the onset of hotter, drier weather is quickly drying out forests and rangeland, making it easier for fires to start. More than half of ODF-protected lands are in districts that have declared the start of fire season this month. It's especially important as summer approaches to avoid or be extra careful with any potential source of fire in wooded areas. Fire season means the end of most outdoor activities that are high risk for starting a fire, such as debris burning, campfires outside of designated areas, and using tracer ammunition and exploding targets.







Monday, June 1, 2015

Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) Fire Update for Monday, June 1, 2015

This is the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) fire update for Monday, June 1, 2015.

FIRES ON ODF-PROTECTED LANDS
No fires 10 acres or larger have been reported during the past 24 hours on forestlands protected by ODF.

Lightning, mostly accompanied by precipitation – heavy in some areas, moved through much of Oregon (western Oregon from south to north, Willamette Valley, Columbia Gorge/northern Oregon, north- and central-eastern Oregon, and central Oregon) during the evening of May 31 and early morning on June 1.  As a few examples, the South Cascade District (Linn and western Lane counties) estimates receiving approximately 50 strikes; last night, Douglas Forest Protective Association estimated they received approximately 800 strikes; and dozens of strikes were reported by the Southwest Oregon District in the Josephine County area.  Numerous small lightning-start fires were and are still being reported on various forestland ownerships, none of which at this time are near 10 acres or larger, and initial attack of those fire starts has been ongoing since the onset of the lightning.  ODF will be continuing to use all available detection resources today, from engine patrols to camera detection where available, to seek out any possible additional fire starts from this recent lightning storm.

FIRES ON OTHER LANDS
No new fires were reported burning on other lands in Oregon.

FIRE STATISTICS*
Fire statistics are for the current year and the average over the past 10 years for the 16 million acres of private and public forestland protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry.

January 1, 2015, through today:*
Lightning-caused fires:  8 fires burned 7 acres
Human-caused fires: 111 fires burned 303 acres
Total: 119 fires burned 310 acres

10-year average (January 1 through the present date in the year):
Lightning-caused fires: 9 fires burned 5 acres

Human-caused fires: 82 fires burned 392 acres
Total: 91 fires burned 397 acres

Fire statistics can be accessed any time from the ODF website.*

 
*When personnel are heavily engaged in firefighting activities, the latest information may not always appear in the statistics.

NEWS MEDIA
News media may call the Fire Information Duty Officer, who is currently Jeri Chase, 503-945-7201 (office) or 503-931-2721 (Cell), any time for fire information. If the duty officer is unable to take your call, you can expect a prompt return call. Media may also call the Oregon Department of Forestry headquarters office, 503-945-7200, weekdays during business hours.

ABOUT THIS UPDATE
This update provides information primarily about fires on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected lands involving fires 10 acres or larger. ODF provides fire protection primarily on private and state-owned forestland. The department also provides fire protection on some other lands, including U.S. Bureau of Land Management land in western Oregon.

The Oregon Department of Forestry works closely with neighbors and partner agencies to support the firefighting efforts on major fires outside its authority because sharing firefighting resources can help better protect all of Oregon’s forests.

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Jeri Chase | Public Information Officer
Oregon Department of Forestry
Office: 503-945-7201
Cell:  503-931-2721
Jeri.Chase@oregon.gov

 

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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. 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. 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.