Lightning is largely absent from Oregon this week. However, warm, dry weather will greet the hundreds of thousands of visitors arriving to see the eclipse of the sun on Aug. 21. Avoiding activities that can spark a wildfire is key to making the eclipse a safe and pleasant experience for all. One measure adopted to reduce the risk of wildfire is a temporary ban, now in effect, on all campfires in state parks





Wednesday, September 14, 2016

HIGHWAY 138 FIRE MORNING UPDATE
Firefighters were able to keep the Highway 138 West fire in check overnight and improved control lines around the immediate edge of the fire. No additional spread was reported, and the fire is still estimated at 60 acres.
Today, 110 firefighters will work to continue mopping up hot spots, starting on the edge of the fire and working into the center, with the goal of extinguishing all burning or smoldering materials within the perimeter of the fire. Mopping up the perimeter of the fire will be todays number one priority as heavy fuel loading inside the fire area could potentially hold heat for a long period of time. Crews on the ground will be aided in their efforts by three helicopters that will be used as needed on the fire today.
One lane of highway 138 West is currently open with flaggers as fire crews and ODOT work to remove any hazards along the roadway. Drivers in the area are asked to use caution when driving near the fire as fire equipment will be coming in and out of the fire throughout the day. Updates on the status of the highway will be available on www.tripcheck.com.
DFPA would like to thank all the local fire departments, ODOT, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and local landowners who have helped with the suppression efforts of the Highway 138 West Fire.

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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, 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. There are about 30.4 million total 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.