Current situation

Fire season on ODF-protected land has officially ended in all of Oregon as cooler temperatures and moister conditions settle over much of the state. This late in the fall, a key source of ignitions is fire escaping when piles of woody debris are burned. Care is required with that activity at any time of year.
































Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Eagle Creek Fire forces evacuations in the Columbia Gorge

The Eagle Creek Fire in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area was reported early this morning at 4,800 acres and has come within four miles east of Corbett. The fire started on Sept. 2, just south of Cascade Locks. Over the weekend it jumped the Columbia River near Archer Mountain. All hikers and campers in the area were accounted for and safely removed or led out by Sunday. Trail, railroad and area closures are now in effect. 
 
As of this morning, about 300 personnel were assigned to the fire. Oregon State Fire Marshal task forces are in the fire area doing structure protection. No primary residences have been lost. Additional resources have been ordered. Level 1, 2, and 3 evacuations are in place for Cascade Locks and nearby areas in both Hood River and Multnomah counties. Evacuation levels and zones can rapidly change. The Hood River County Sheriff (http://www.hoodriversheriff.com/news/breaking-news/) and Multnomah County Sheriff (https://flashalert.net/id/MCSO/107579?alert=1) are the most reliable sources for the latest evacuation information. Shelters have been set up at Mt. Hood Community College, 3691 NE 17th Drive in Gresham and at the Skamania County Fairgrounds, immediately across the Columbia River in Stevenson, Wash.
 
A section of Interstate Highway 84 was reported closed from Troutdale (Exit 17) to two miles west of Hood River (Milepost 62). Bridge of the Gods is also closed. SR-14 in Washington is closed to commercial traffic in both directions but open to passenger vehicles. SR-14 is extremely congested in both directions, please travel only if necessary. Get the latest information on road closures at www.tripcheck.com. 
 
On Sunday, Governor Kate Brown declared the fire a conflagration, enabling additional structural resources to be assigned to this fire. She visited the fire's joint information center in Troutdale this afternoon.
 
An interagency incident management team (Type 2) assumed command of the fire yesterday. Under Unified Command ODF is fully integrated with that team and providing mutual aid. Also in the Unified Command are the U.S. Forest Service, the Oregon State Fire Marshal and the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. The team is also assuming command of the nearby 850-acre Indian Creek Fire. 
 
The fire is reported to be human-caused and is under investigation by the Oregon State Police and other authorities.

No comments:

Post a Comment

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, in the summer of 2017 a series of heatwaves and a prolonged stretch of dry weather created conditions that dried forest fuels, allowing fires to start and spread. The result was more than a thousand fires on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry.Ninety-five percent of these 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.





Followers

About Me

My photo
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.