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.


































Thursday, June 16, 2016

Akawana Fire - final update, June 15, 2016

Christie Shaw
Public Information Officer
541-263-0661
Christie.shaw@oregon.gov

Mop-up operations for the 2,094 acre Akawana Fire are nearly complete. The fire is now 95 percent contained, with a 500-foot cold black line around most of the perimeter. Smoke may continue to be visible from material burning in the interior of the fire for several weeks. Cool, moist weather throughout central Oregon has aided firefighters during the mop-up activities, and reduced interior fire activity. Firefighters experienced scattered showers over some parts of the fire today, and the weather forecast calls for additional precipitation over the next few days.

The Type 3 Team, led by Incident Commander Rob Pentzer, will transfer command of the fire back to ODF’s Central Oregon District Thursday morning. A 10-person hand crew from the district will continue to patrol the fire, extinguishing any smoke or flames within the 500-foot perimeter on Thursday. District personnel will continue to monitor the fire and provide regular patrols throughout fire season.

The Emergency Area Closure implemented for public safety near the fire for the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests and Crooked River Grassland was lifted June 14, 2016, at 6 a.m. The public is asked to keep clear of firefighting activities, including mop-up operations and patrols within the Akawana Fire perimeter. 

While the weather may be in a cooling trend with scattered moisture, it is still fire season in the Central Oregon District. Burning is allowed by permit only. Please contact your local ODF office for further information. Exploding targets and tracer ammunition are prohibited during fire season, as well as sky lanterns.
This will be the final news release for the Akawana Fire. Please direct questions or requests for information to Christie Shaw (541-263-0661), Information Officer for the Central Oregon District.  For more information on ODF’s Central Oregon District visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com.

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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, 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.