Current situation

Fire season on ODF-protected land has officially ended in all of Oregon as cooler temperatures and moister conditions settle over much of the state. This late in the fall, a key source of ignitions is fire escaping when piles of woody debris are burned. Care is required with that activity at any time of year.
































Sunday, August 23, 2015

Willamina Creek Fire Evening Update - Sunday, August 23, 2015

Willamina Creek Fire Update
Oregon Department of Forestry
West Oregon District – Dallas Unit

Fire Information number:  (503) 934-8153


August 23, 2015
9:00 pm
 

Current Situation:  Excellent progress on containing the Willamina Creek Fire was made today. The fire has not grown since Friday night. Increases in acreage shown in these updates over the last few days reflect the GPS data collection work that has been completed which has resulted in more accurate mapping. The final acreage is not expected to increase from today’s total.

Today, firefighters continued the grueling work of mopping up the fire. Crews made great progress on this work on the majority of the fire perimeter. Some heat remains along the east side of the fire, which crews will focus on tonight to make sure the entire edge of the fire is secure. This is the last planned full night shift. Quite a bit of mop-up work remains in the interior—some in very tough ground—the remaining work will be completed during the course of the next few days.

A significant change in the evacuation level will be effective at 9:00 pm tonight. The evacuation level for the cabins on East Creek Road will be reduced from Level 3 (Go!) to Level 1 (Ready). Landowners will be allowed to access their property. Level 1 evacuation means that homeowners should be prepared to evacuate, long before the threat arises. Assemble emergency supplies and have a plan for how you would escape if you had to. For more information about the Ready, Set, Go! Program, visit www.wildlandfirersg.org.

Firefighters have felt the community support and appreciate the signs and words of gratitude from local residents. On their way off the fireline tonight, Bravo Division stopped at a neighboring home where the homeowners had set up a sweet thank you of delicious baked goods. The crews were so grateful for this kind gesture. Yamhill County has also been a big supporter and today activated their ARES (ham radio) unit to assist their CERT members with communications while they manage the road blocks. For anyone who wants to support the fire effort, please consider making a donation to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation (www.wffoundation.org) or the American Red Cross (www.redcross.org).

Weather and Fire Behavior: 
The weather forecast for tonight calls for gusty winds coming back around from the west which should ease after dark. Relative humidity is expected to rise tonight with a marine layer coming in over the fire area. The temperature is forecast to be 50-53 degrees with 84-88% humidity.

Fire Statistics
Location:  approx. 9 miles north of Willamina, OR  
Percent contained: 50%           
Size:  230 acres                   
Cause:  under investigation  
Start Date: 8/19/15, approximately 5:00 pm  
Wildland resources assigned to the fire include (day and night shifts): 16 hand crews, 11 engines, 4 dozers, 12 water tenders, and overhead personnel. 
Air resources:  1 Type 2 helicopter
Total personnel:  266
Cost estimate to date:  $860,000

Evacuations and closures:
Four cabins along East Creek Road are under a Level 1 evacuation. Willamina Creek Road and East Creek Road are closed north of the junction with Coast Creek Road.

Places to get information: ODF Fire Blog - http://wildfireoregondeptofforestry.blogspot.com/
Facebook - www.facebook.com/oregondepartmentofforestry
Twitter - www.twitter.com/ORDeptForestry

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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.