Current situation

Check with your local district or forest protection association for restrictions or use ODF's fire restrictions and closures web page for the latest details at https://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Fire/Pages/Restrictions.aspx.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Drones intrude into restricted airspace over Miller Complex wildfire

An unauthorized incursion by two non-mechanized gliders occurred over the Miller Complex on August 19That group of wildfires is burning 17 miles east of Cave Junction in southern Oregon. The drones intruded into an area where aircraft were assisting with firefighting operations. This caused fire mangers to ground all the aircraft for 45 minutes due to safety concerns.

Unauthorized flights by drones, hang-gliders or other types of aircraft over or near any wildfire could cause serious injury or death from collision with firefighting planes and helicopters, or to firefighters on the ground.

A Federal Aviation Administration Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is in effect over the Miller Complex. For more information on restrictions on drones at wildfires, visit the FAA’s website.

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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 about current wildfires. Please keep your posts civil and free of profanity.

Current wildfire info

National weather forecasters predictions that Oregon would see above average temperatures and below average rainfall in the summer of 2018 proved true. Almost all of Oregon was abnormally dry this summer, with a majority of the state in moderate to severe drought. Many areas posted record high temperatures or record strings of hot days. These conditions set the stage for potentially large, fast-moving wildfires.


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.