Current situation

Sunny and dry conditions again prevail across Oregon this week. Mild temperatures will give way to warmer conditions, melting snow and drying fuels faster. This will raise fire risk across the state. There have already been twice as many wildfires on ODF-protected land compared to the same time last year, with more than twice as many acres burned.



May is Wildfire Awareness Month, a time when homeowners are urged to take steps to reduce the risk of wildfire around their house and other structures. Among these are clearing debris from roofs and gutters, cutting back brush from around structures, and removing lower branches from trees.








Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Cleveland Ridge Fire update, 08-24-16

Contact:       Brian Ballou, (541) 621-4156
                       Melissa Cano, (541) 613-6313
For more info: www.swofire.com
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          
Crews Focus on North End of Cleveland Ridge Fire

The size of the Cleveland Ridge Fire this morning is 635 acres. Eighty percent of the fire’s perimeter has a fire line around it. Most of the overnight fire activity was in the north end, which is also where much of today’s fire line construction focus will be.

More than 200 firefighters are assigned to the day shift (6 a.m. to 6 p.m.). Approximately 150 firefighters worked the night shift (6 p.m. to 6 a.m.). Helicopters and air tankers will be available to day shift firefighters.

Residents on Taylor Rd. and the West Fork of Trail Creek Rd. remain under a Level 2 (Set) Evacuation Level, which went into effect at 8 a.m. Tuesday. Residents along Hwy. 227 from the junction with the West Fork of Trail Creek Rd. to address 6481 were also placed under the Level 2 alert. More than 40 structures are within the evacuation alert area.

A structural protection task force remains in place today to protect homes and other structures in the event the wildfire posed a threat. The team is assembled from engines and personnel from fire districts in Jackson and Josephine counties.

Weather for today in the fire area is expected to be much like Tuesday: High temperatures in the low 90s, relative humidity in the high teens, and light winds from the north/northeast.

The fire started Monday afternoon, and its cause is under investigation.

Fire management officials ask that the public continue to use caution and adhere to regulations. Current fire restrictions for lands in Jackson and Josephine Counties protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry Southwest Oregon District can be found on the district’s Facebook page at “ODF Southwest Oregon District,” @ODFSouthwest, and the website www.swofire.com. Maps of the Cleveland Ridge Fire can be found at https://swofiredata.com.

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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 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.

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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.