Current situation

Fire season on ODF-protected land ended in most of Oregon last week as cooler temperatures, shorter days and moister conditions settled over much of the state.





























Tuesday, July 11, 2017

All ODF fire protection districts are now in fire season

With the declaration of fire season yesterday in ODF's Northwest Oregon District, all 12 fire protection districts and associations are in fire season. Districts and associations declare fire season as local conditions become drier and warmer. Those factors increase the risk of fire starting.

Oregon summers usually see little rainfall, so vegetation will continue to dry out as the summer advances. This makes fuels catch fire more easily and spread more quickly. Fire danger levels are raised when conditions worsen. Higher fire danger levels prompt increased fire restrictions. As the timing of these varies by location, check restrictions for a particular area on ODF's Fire Restrictions and Closures web page.
 
Above: Brush, grass and trees like these in central Oregon's Crook County north of Prineville are quickly drying out under the summer sun. Most fires are caused by careless human activity that ignites these dry fuels. Photo by Jim Gersbach, ODF.

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Have a question/comment about this season's wildfire activity on the 16 million acres of private and public forestlands that the Oregon Dept. of Forestry protects from wildfire? Let us know. Please keep your remarks civil and free of profanity.

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. 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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About Me

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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.