Current situation

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

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Total burn ban in effect for Columbia County includes recreational fires

Press Release – Recreational Fires
From the Columbia County Fire Defense Board
Effective May 9, 2019 at 12:01 am

A total burn ban has been implemented including recreational fires in all Columbia County Fire Protection Districts including Columbia River Fire & Rescue, Clatskanie Fire District, Mist-Birkenfeld Fire District, Oregon Department of Forestry, Scappoose Fire District and Vernonia Rural Fire Protection District. 

The Columbia County Fire Defense Board which is made up of fire chiefs from these districts has determined that a dramatic increase in the outdoor fire hazard has occurred. The burn ban includes all recreational and debris burning until significant weather changes the fire hazard. Campfires, fire pits, burn barrels, burn piles, and bon fires are not allowed! For additional information regarding fire season 2019 please visit: https://www.oregon.gov/ODF/Fire/Pages/Restrictions.aspx

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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.


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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.