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.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Tuesday Fires squelched by Douglas Forest Protective Association

The Douglas Forest Protective Association and local fire departments responded to two natural cover fires Tuesday afternoon.  

The first fire was reported at 1:50 p.m. near Highway 138 West, Mile Post 16.  A brushing crew in the area from the Douglas County Public Works Department and employees from ODOT worked on suppressing the fire before DFPA and Kellogg Volunteer Fire Department arrived on scene.  Firefighters were able to stop the fire spread at 1/2 acre.  Firefighters remained on scene until 6:00 p.m. securing fire trails and mopping up hot spots.  

Fire officials determined that the fire was caused by a holdover debris pile which was burned earlier this spring.  Fire official ask that anyone who has burned debris piles this past winter or spring, check the burned area for any remaining heat or smoke, as debris piles have the ability to smolder for long periods of time before popping back to life on hot, windy days.
As firefighters were responding to the fire on Highway 138 West, a second fire was reported at 1:55 p.m. at Cooper Creek Reservoir near Sutherlin.  Firefighters from DFPA, Douglas County Fire District #2, and Fair Oaks Rural Fire Department responded to the fire and stopped the spread at 1/10th of an acre.  

Fire officials determined that the Cooper Creek fire was started by juveniles playing with a lighter.
With hot, dry weather forecasted for the next week, fire officials ask that everyone know and follow the public use restrictions currently in effect.  Fire official says that the dry fuels in wildland areas are currently at conditions normally seen towards the end of July or early August.
For a complete list of public or industrial restrictions currently in effect, visit or call 541-672-0379.

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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.


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.