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.







Friday, July 10, 2015

Oregon Department of Forestry Fire Update - Friday, July 10, 2015


This is the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) Fire Update for Friday, July 10, 2015.

Widespread thunderstorms and lightning moved throughout much of Oregon yesterday and last night, igniting numerous small fires on forestlands throughout Oregon, including those protected by ODF.  Some of that lightning came with some precipitation, which is predicted to continue as an overall cooler weather pattern moves into and throughout much of Oregon.  Cooling and minor amounts of rainfall have not appreciably decreased fire danger, however, and the public is still urged to continue to be fire-safe while enjoying or working in Oregon’s fires. 

FIRES ON ODF-PROTECTED LANDS

(Initial Report):  Northeast Oregon District – Pendleton Unit:  Firefighters from around the area have responded to a fire ignited by a thunderstorm on Thursday evening on lands protected by Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) and the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla (CTUIR).  The Table Rock Fire, burning approximately 8 miles northeast of Pilot Rock, was estimated at 400 acres.  This morning, the fire is 100 percent lined and in mop-up.  The fire suppression is being led by ODF, with firefighters and/or equipment assisting from Helix, Echo, Stanfield, and Pilot Rock Rural Fire Departments, Pendleton Fire Department, Bureau of Indian Affairs, CTUIR Tribal Fire, and Umatilla National Forest.  Burning in mostly grass and brush, this morning the fire is 100 percent lined and in mop-up.  Unless the situation warrants more reports, this will be the only report on this fire.  More information:  http://bluemountainfireinfo.blogspot.com

(Updated Report):  North Cascade District – Santiam Unit: The Niagara Fire, reported on July 4 burning on state forestlands adjacent to Highway 22 near Big Cliff Dam, remains at approximately 79 acres and is now estimated as 85 percent contained, with full containment expected around Monday (July 13).  Approximately 120 firefighting personnel remained on this fire late yesterday afternoon, however resources continue to be released as the fire is more fully contained.  The cause of the fire remains under investigation.  More information:  http://wildfireoregondeptofforestry.blogspot.com/.

 
NEWS MEDIA
News media may contact the Fire Information Duty Officer, who is currently Jeri Chase, 503-945-7201 (office), 503-931-2721 (mobile), or Jeri.Chase@Oregon.gov, 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 proves 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 effort on major fires outside its authority because sharing firefighting resources can help better protect all of Oregon’s forests.

 

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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.