Current situation

Welcome rain and cooler temperatures early this week have reduced fire danger in Oregon. The change in weather has also helped check the growth of many existing fires and allowed firefighters to increase containment levels.




















Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Help wanted to determine cause of Gold Canyon Fire


OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY                                                                                                        
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT                                                                                              

Contact:      
Brian Ballou
541-621-4156                                                                                                                                                          

The Oregon Department of Forestry’s Southwest Oregon District is asking the public’s help in identifying the person or people who may be responsible for starting yesterday’s Gold Canyon Fire, which burned 120 acres of forestland south of Selma in Josephine County. The fire was reported at 4:53 p.m. Tuesday alongside Highway 199 (Redwood Highway) near the intersection with Gold Canyon Drive.

Please call the Oregon Department of Forestry’s Grants Pass Unit office at (541) 471-3883 if you have information that will help identify people or vehicles in the area at that time. Information received will be confidential.

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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, 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. 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.