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Aug-26-2011 16:51printcomments

Oregon Department of Forestry Daily Fire Update for Friday, August 26, 2011

Oregon active fires map

(Salem, Oregon) - This is the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) fire update for Friday, August 26, 2011.

Over the past 24 hours, lightning continued to move through Oregon, including systems through western Oregon, starting near Eugene, that moved northeast through Wasco County/Cascade crest, out of Oregon into central Washington, and then veering south into Oregon again into portions of Umatilla County. Precipitation accompanying this lightning was variable. More lightning and thunderstorms are in the weather forecasts for parts of Oregon from today through Sunday.

The Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center has reported this morning that there have been more than 196 new fire starts since the in initial lightning storm passed through southern/southeastern, central, and northeast Oregon on Wednesday afternoon and evening. The majority of these fire starts have been contained, with a few fires resulting in extended attack. Crews from all fire protection agencies in Oregon, including the Oregon Department of Forestry, continue to work actively in suppressing new fire starts, extended attack on those fires that necessitate it, and at patrol, reconnaissance, and detection to locate any new holdover fires from the lightning earlier this week, as well as on new fire starts due to the lightning from last night/early this morning, in addition to monitoring those fires that have been contained and are in patrol status.

Fires On ODF-Protected Lands:
Central Oregon District, John Day Unit, Fossil Sub-Unit:
The Rosenbaum Fire was reported at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, August 25, burning in grass, juniper, and sagebrush on the west side of Rosenbaum Canyon. This fire is active and estimated at 100 acres. Resources assigned to this fire have included one engine, one air tanker, and one dozer.

The Cobb Saddle Fire was reported in the morning on Thursday, August 25, burning at the bottom of a local landmark know as Hells Half Acre in grass and timber in steep terrain. The fire was last reported at 16 acres, active, and 45 percent lined. Resources assigned to this fire have included one engine, two air tankers, one helicopter, and one dozer.

The 29-acre Murphey Mt. Fire, near the north fork of the John Day River, reported early on Thursday, August 25, burned in grass and timber in steep terrain on ODF protected lands. At this time, this fire is mopped up. Unless the situation changes, this will be the last report on this fire.


Central Oregon District, Prineville Unit:
The Johnson Creek #2 Fire, burning near Johnson Creek seven miles east of Prineville, was reported on Thursday evening, August 25. This fire is at 122 acres this morning, lined and in mop-up. Smoke may be noticeable in the Prineville area from this fire. NOTE: This fire is approximately 1/2 mile away from an initial Johnson Creek Fire that was contained on Thursday, August 25.

Incident 951-016 was reported the afternoon of Thursday, August 25, seven miles northeast of Prineville, burning in grass, juniper, and pine. The initial report estimated this fire at 10 acres, uncontrolled, but crews anticipated catching this fire at initial attack. Yesterday, six engines, one crew, one tender, and one dozer were some of the resources assigned to this fire.

The Allen Creek Fire, reported on Wednesday evening, August 24, 13 miles south of Mitchell, burned 47 acres in grass, brush, and pine. This fire was 100 percent lined and controlled by last night. Unless the situation changes, this will be the last report on this fire.

Other Information:
Because of the conditions in many of Oregon's forests due to the seasonal hot and dry weather, Regulated Use Restrictions are in place and increasing throughout most locations in the state. Please check with your local ODF office before heading out to recreate or engage in other forest activities, so that you are aware of these restrictions and what they mean to you and your use of Oregon's forests.

Fires On Other Lands:
The Hancock Fire Complex (Incident #511), is the largest fire currently burning in Oregon. The Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center reported this morning that the complex, "which is a group of five fires burning more than 15,000 acres around Clarno. These fires are burning on both sides of Highway 218 and on both sides of the John Day River. The eastern-most fire triggered the safe evacuation of approximately 55 young campers Wednesday of the Hancock Field Station, a 10-acre science camp run by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry located one mile east of Clarno. Campers have not yet returned to the Field Station.

The Central Oregon Type II Incident Management Team (Mark Rapp) assumed command of the fire at 6:00 a.m. this morning and is busy assessing the wildfire and bringing in additional resources. Currently more than 100 firefighters are working, including two hotshot crews (Prineville and Union), one 20-person hand crew, 15 engines, and more resources are on the way. The Hancock Fire Complex a typical rangeland fire that moves quickly through light grass and shrub but dies down overnight when temperatures cool. Fire crews will focus on finding and suppressing hotspots in the cooler evening and morning hours when fire behavior is lower and will continue to construct and hold containment lines throughout the day."

The Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center also reported this morning: "Firefighters on the Warm Springs Reservation have been busy over the past several days responding to new wildfires as well. The Seekseequa Fire burning near the Metolius Rim is 1,000 acres this morning, and the West Hills Fire, burning near the city of Warm Springs is approximately 300 acres this morning. A new fire, the Antoken Fire, is burning about 500 acres on the northeast side of the reservation. No structures are threatened with any of these, and there are no estimates of containment at this time. Information on these fires will available at 541-553-2413.

Other Fire Information:
For information on wildfires in all jurisdictions within Oregon, go to the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center website, www.nwccweb.us, or to the national Incident Information System website, www.inciweb.org/state/38.

About This Update:
The Oregon Department of Forestry is responsible for fire protection on private and state-owned forestland, and on a limited amount of other forestlands, including those owned by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management in western Oregon. However, because fires starting on one ownership type may spread to others, and because of the need to share firefighting resources, agencies commonly work closely together.

This update focuses primarily on firefighting activity on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected land, and on the department's role as a partner in fighting major fires that start on land protected by other agencies.

Fire Statistics:
Fire statistics are for the current year and the average over the past 10 years for the 16 million acres of private and public forestland protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry:
January 1, 2011, through today:

  • Lightning-caused fires: 61 fires burned approximately 246 acres
  • Human-caused fires: 304 fires burned approximately 409 acres
  • Total: 365 fires burned approximately 655 acres

10-year average (January 1 through the present date in the year):
  • Lightning-caused fires: 273 fires burned approximately 20,686 acres
  • Human-caused fires: 515 fires burned approximately 3,428 acres
  • Total: 788 fires burned approximately 24,114 acres

Source: Oregon Department of Forestry




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