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.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

High Pass 12.5 Fire final update 08-30-16

Aug. 30, 2016    Morning Update

Ashley Lertora

As hand crews and fire engine crews work hard to extinguish the few remaining smokes and hot spots in the outer 400-foot ring around the High Pass 12.5 Fire, other resources are being released. Night shift crews are no longer needed and only day shift is planned for today. Resources on the fire today include: 13 (20-person) hand crews, 14 fire engines and 11 water tenders. There are a total of 417 personnel assigned to the incident today. 

These numbers will be diminishing throughout the day as personnel leave the fire and return to their home bases.

Final mapped fire size is 191 acres. The High Pass 12.5 Fire is 80 percent contained. Estimated costs to date total $2.54 million.

The ODF incident management team will spend today working with local district staff on a transition plan. A few resources - one hand crew, two fire engines, one water tender and one excavator - will be under the supervision of district personnel to keep working and patrolling this fire. This allows for local district personnel to be available for initial attack on any new starts.

The team will transfer command of the suppression operation to the local district Wednesday. This is the final update for this incident.  Further questions can be directed to ODF's West Oregon District office, 541-935-2283. 

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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:

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.