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.







Thursday, August 27, 2015

Oregon Dept. of Forestry fire update - 08-27-15

The 11,908-acre Eagle Complex 20 miles NW of Richland, Oregon, is seven percent contained. The lightning-caused fires are currently staffed with 328 total personnel. Resources include: nine hand crews, 14 fire engines, four water tenders, seven bulldozers and five helicopters.

The 85,960-acre Canyon Creek Complex south of John Day is 44 percent contained. The lightning-caused fires are located one mile south of John Day and Canyon City. Afternoon winds Wednesday coupled with hot, dry conditions caused expansion and triggered evacuations in the Pine Creek area.

The Eldorado Fire and Cornet-Windy Ridge Complex – The Eldorado Fire five miles SE of Unity is 20,635 acres and 80 percent contained. The Cornet-Windy Ridge Complex 16 miles south of Baker City is 103,887 acres and 85 percent contained.

Mop-up continues on the 26-acre August Fire in the Forest Grove District. The fire lines appear to be secure, But ODF will continue to manage the fire for the possibility of dry easterly winds in September. Cause is under investigation.

The 71,959-acre Grizzly Bear Complex is 10 percent contained. The lightning-caused fires are burning 20 miles SE of Dayton, Wash., and near Troy, Ore., in the Northeast Oregon District.

The 24,452-acre Stouts Creek Fire is 86 percent contained. The human-caused fire is burning 16 miles east of Canyonville. No perimeter growth is expected.

The 337-acre Falls Creek Fire is uncontained. It is burning five miles south of Joseph.

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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.