Our Legal Charter:
   Fire Protection
   & Medical Services
Contact Information
   & District Personnel
Board Meeting Minutes
   Most Recent & Archives
Funding & Budget
Fundraising
Site Intro Page
Current Fire Danger Level
   & Activity Restrictions
Wildland Fire Prevention
   Fuel Breaks & Other Tips
Fire News Links
& Online Prevention Info
Weather & Fire Weather
   Links, News & Info
Lightning & Fires
Colestin/Hilt Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP)
Stoves & Flue Fires
   Prevention & Handling
Firewood
   Fuel Values & Ratings
Home & Personal Safety
Medical Emergency Tips


Fire-Related News - 2009

 

Local & regional news releases, articles & Info

A chronological listing, with excerpts & links, for 2009


NOTE:  Not all regional fire news is included here.  For more, see:

The Oregon Department of Forestry website at: http://www.swofire.oregon.gov/ and their Wildfires page at: http://www.swofire.oregon.gov/ODF/FIRE/fire.shtml, which has links at the top to "Fire Stats, Info and Updates," fires chronologies, and more.

The CAL-FIRE (California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection) website at: http://www.fire.ca.gov/, which has links to a listing of fire incidents.

 

The Oregon Dept. of Forestry declared the end of the 2009 fire season, effective as of 1:00 a.m. Wednesday, October 14th.

All fire danger restrictions were lifted, including the ban on open burning.  The remaining fire danger was posted as "LOW" (green).

The 2009 fire season began Friday, June 19th and lasted 117 days.

 

The ODF's bulletin announcing the end of the season follows below:

 

October 13, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Brian Ballou, (541) 665-0662

FIRE SEASON ENDS TOMORROW ON ODF-PROTECTED LANDS

Fire season ends tomorrow, Oct. 14, at 1:00 a.m. on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry's Southwest Oregon District. The season began June 19 and lasted 117 days.

The largest fire of the season was the 633-acre Deer Ridge Fire that broke out east of Medford on Sept. 21. Medford Unit crews responded to 120 fires that burned a total of 1,073 acres. Grants Pass Unit firefighters took action on 116 fires that burned 123 acres. The largest fire in the Grants Pass Unit was the 48-acre Lone Mountain Road Fire, which occurred Aug. 24 near O'Brien.

ODF's Southwest Oregon District protects 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands in Jackson and Josephine counties.

The fire danger level will be "low" (green) and all fire restrictions will be removed.

Woody debris pile and barrel burning will be allowed on ODF-protected lands starting tomorrow. However, open burning is regulated for air quality in all of Jackson County, and in the Rogue Basin Open Burn Control Area in Josephine County. Before starting a burn, call the open burning advisory number for your county:

-- Jackson County, 776-7007
-- Josephine County, 476-WOOD

Some cities do not allow open burning, and many rural fire protection districts require a burning permit. Call your local structural fire service provider before burning.

Information about fire season restrictions is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

-- Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
-- Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152

###

Formatted copy attached [linked here] (Adobe Reader)

 

 

October 5, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Brian Ballou, (541) 665-0662


MANY FIRE RESTRICTIONS LIFTED

A few days of chilly, wet weather has allowed the Oregon Department of Forestry to remove fire-prevention restrictions on power equipment use, off-road driving and other measures effective today. This action affects lands protected by ODF's Southwest Oregon District in Jackson and Josephine counties.

The fire danger level remains "high" (yellow) and the Industrial Fire Precaution Level is I (one).

Here are the public regulated use restrictions now in place:

* Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed in other locations.

* All debris burning, including debris burned in a burn barrel, is prohibited.

* Fireworks use on forestlands is prohibited.

Information about fire season restrictions on ODF-protected lands is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov, and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152

###

Formatted copy attached [linked here] (Acrobat Reader)

 

 

Thursday, October 1, 2009

"Despite the recent rain, 'fire danger is still there"

Published in The Mail Tribune (Medford, OR) online at:
http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20091001/NEWS/910010329.

 

 

September 24, 2009
5:15 p.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Contact: Brian Ballou, (541) 621-4156

DEER RIDGE AND SISKIYOU FIRES TO BE CONTAINED BY 6:00 PM

The Deer Ridge and Siskiyou fires will be declared contained as of 6:00 p.m. today, said Greg Alexander, incident commander of both fires and ODF's Medford Unit forester. "There is still some smoke visible in both of these fires," said Alexander, "but its deep in the interior. Good mop up by the crews over the last several days has made the firelines secure."

District Forester Dan Thorpe added that smoke may occasionally be seen drifting from these fires, particularly through the weekend. "They likely won't be declared 'out' until after a good rainstorm," said Thorpe.

Today, more than 200 firefighters worked on the Deer Ridge and Siskiyou fires, which broke out Monday. The number of firefighters assigned to both fires will drop to 150 tomorrow.

Containment means the firelines have been fully completed, and hot spots have been extinguished at least 150 feet between the firelines and the fires' interior. These measures should be sufficient to contain flare-ups within the fires' interior, should they occur.

The cost of suppression so far on both fires is $1.7 million.

The causes of the fires are under investigation.

###

 

 

September 23, 2009
5:15 p.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Contact: Brian Ballou, (541) 665-0662 or (541) 621-4156

CONTAINMENT EXPECTED TOMORROW ON SISKIYOU AND DEER RIDGE FIRES

The Oregon Department of Forestry's Southwest District expects to declare both the Siskiyou and Deer Ridge fires fully contained by 6:00 p.m. Thursday. Work toward extinguishing hot spots on these fires is going very well, and the chance that either fire will cross firelines is significantly reduced.

Crews tonight will patrol both fires to watch for flare-ups.

The Siskiyou Fire is 190 acres - a change in size due to improved mapping - and the Deer Ridge Fire is 630 acres. More than 850 firefighters battled the blazes.

The causes of these fires are being investigated.

The Oregon State Fire Marshal Red Team was released today, and firefighters and engines from 30 western and central Oregon fire districts returned to their home units. The team was deployed to coordinate home protection during the fires, both of which broke out Monday within hours of each other.

Gov. Ted Kulongoski invoked the Oregon Conflagration Act that day to enable the use of out-of-area structural fire-fighting equipment and personnel.

Structural fire support was provided first, and longest, by structural fire protection districts in Jackson and Josephine counties, including Ashland Fire & Rescue, Jackson County Fire District #5, Medford Fire-Rescue, Illinois Valley Fire District, Jackson County Fire District #4, Lake Creek Fire District, Rural-Metro Fire Department, Applegate Fire District #9, Jackson County Fire District #3, Rogue River Fire District, Jacksonville Fire Department and Grants Pass Fire-Rescue.

The Southwest Oregon District had additional assistance for fighting these fires from the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the Douglas and Coos forest protective associations, other Oregon Department of Forestry districts, local landowners and residents, and timber industry cooperators.

###

 

 

Sept. 23, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Brian Ballou, (541) 665-0662

HELP WANTED TO DETERMINE CAUSE OF DEER RIDGE FIRE

Members of the public who saw the start of the Deer Ridge Fire in east Medford are asked to contact the Oregon Department of Forestry. The fire started Monday, Sept. 21, 2:29 p.m., near the streets of Deer Ridge Drive and Vista Point.

The fire is being investigated by the Oregon Department of Forestry, Medford Fire-Rescue and the Medford Police Department.

Call (877) 888-7343, toll-free, to reach the Department of Forestry's Fire Tips message line. Your information is confidential, so please leave your name, a phone number, whether you have photographs or video of the fire in its early stages, and a description of what you saw.

###

Formatted copy attached [Linked here] (Adobe Reader)

 

 

Wednesday, September 23, 2009
10:05 AM

From: Brian Ballou

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Thank-you letter from your firefighters

All,

Attached [linked here] is a letter from the Oregon State Fire Marshal's incident management team that provided the additional structural fire protection during the Siskiyou and Deer Ridge fires. Please read and share with your readers, viewers, colleagues, friends and neighbors.

Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 

September 22, 2009
4:30 p.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Contact: Brian Ballou and Storm Smith, (541) 665-0662 or (541) 621-4156

SISKIYOU FIRE NEARLY CONTAINED

The Siskiyou Fire is 85 percent contained as of this afternoon, and the Deer Ridge Fire is 45 percent contained. Both fires broke out Monday. The Siskiyou Fire burned 145 acres of grass, brush and forest in the south end of Ashland, and the Deer Ridge Fire burned 630 acres east of Medford.

One home and three outbuildings were burned in the Siskiyou Fire, and none in the Deer Ridge Fire. Five hundred homes, businesses and other structures were threatened by the blazes.

More than 475 firefighters are assigned to the fires. The cost, so far, of suppressing the fires is approximately $820,000.

The cause of the fires remains under investigation.

 

 

September 22, 2009
7:15 a.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Contact: Brian Ballou, (541) 665-0662 and (541) 621-4156

GOOD PROGRESS REPORTED ON DEER RIDGE AND SIKSIYOU FIRES

Firefighters completed a fireline around the 633-acre Deer Ridge Fire last night, effectively stopping the blaze that threatened hundreds of homes east of Medford on Monday. Today, crews from across the state will install hose systems around the fire and extinguish flames around home and along the fireline.

The fire is still not contained.

No homes were burned in the Deer Ridge Fire, and no injuries were reported.

Roadblocks are in place on Foothill Rd. between Coker Butte Rd. and McAndrews Rd. because fire-related traffic will be heavy today on Foothill Rd.

The Siskiyou Fire in south Ashland was held overnight at 153 acres. Crews extinguished flames and hot spots 20-50 feet inside the fireline. Although a fireline encircles the fire, the fire has not yet been declared contained.

One home, a few outbuildings and a pickup truck burned in yesterday’s fire.

The National Weather Service issued a Red Flag Warning for this morning, calling for above normal temperatures, low humidity and wind in the area of both fires. However, the wind should diminish in the afternoon.

###

 

 

Sept. 21, 2009
8:30 p.m.


Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Contact: Brian Ballou and Tom Fields, (541) 665-0662

HOT WINDY CONDITIONS FUEL FIRES

Fire crews from throughout southwestern Oregon have their hands full this evening as two fires, that started within an hour of one another, continue to burn on the outskirts of Medford and Ashland.

The Siskiyou Fire in south Ashland has burned about 100 acres and is fully trailed, but not contained. The fire started at about 11:00 a.m. and was quickly fueled by high winds driving the fire towards the Tollman Creek area. Residents are beginning to return to their homes tonight after roughly 100 homes were evacuated. One home was lost to the fire.

The Governor ordered the Conflagration Act during the Siskiyou Fire incident and now structural task forces are splitting their time between the two incidents.

Fire crews will continue to work through the night securing lines and mopping up hot spots to prevent future spread.

The Deer Ridge Fire started shortly after noon in the Roxy Ann Peak area due east of Medford. This fire has burned about 600 acres.

A voluntary evacuation is in place in the following areas: Foothills Road between McAndrews and Corey; Dry Creek Road and North Roxy Drive; Devils Garden Road and Dodson Drive; the Manzanita Heights area; and the Normil Terrace neighborhood. Fire managers are hoping to have the fire trailed by tomorrow morning, but are contending with extreme weather conditions.

Overnight resources on the Deer Ridge Fire include 13 fire crews and three bull dozers.

###

 

Fri Sep 18 2009 11:04 AM PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

"CAL FIRE offers $10,000 reward for Black Fire information"

"CAL FIRE investigators are asking for the public’s help in finding the person or persons responsible for starting the Black Fire, which burned 103 acres and threatened homes near Hornbrook earlier this month.

"The fire was started on Sept. 2 in the Klamath River Country Estates (KRCE) east of Hornbrook.

"CAL FIRE is offering a reward of up to $10,000 for any information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the responsible parties. Anyone with information should call the Confidential Arson Hotline at 1-800-468-4408."

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1073700793/CAL-FIRE-offers-10-000-reward-for-Black-Fire-information

 

 

September 13, 2009
5:30 p.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Queens Branch, Dixie Gulch Fires Lined, Being Mopped Up

Firefighters made good progress today on the Queens Branch and Dixie Gulch fires, located approx. 9 miles north of the city of Rogue River. Lightning started the fires late Saturday. Helicopters ferrying buckets of water drenched stubborn hot spots on the north side of the 15-acre Dixie Gulch Fire, while crews digging fire line were able to completely encircle the fire. Crews on the 20-acre Queens Branch Fire spent a productive day mopping up smokes.

Mop up and fireline reinforcement will continue through the night on both fires.

Mop up also continued on the 1-acre Elk Mountain Fire and the quarter-acre McCoy Creek Fire, both of which were caused by Saturday's lightning storm.

All four of these fires are in the Oregon Department of Forestry's Grants Pass Unit.

Medford Unit firefighters found a quarter-acre lightning-caused fire near Rustler Peak. The fire is lined and mop-up is underway.

Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 

September 13, 2009
9:15 a.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Lightning Causes Four Fires in ODF's Grants Pass Unit

A dry lighting storm late Saturday sparked three fires north of the city of Rogue River, the largest of which was the Queens Branch Fire, estimated at 20 acres. A second fire in the Dixie Gulch area is estimated at 6 acres. Fire crews worked through the night on both fires to complete fire lines and extinguish hot spots. Both fires are burning in heavy timber.

Residents in the Queens Branch Road, Pleasant Creek Road, and West Evans Creek Road areas should expect to see helicopters and possibly a retardant bomber in the air today, and there will be heavy fire-related vehicle traffic on the roads in this area.

The third lightning-caused fire north or Rogue River was discovered near Elk Mountain and was stopped at one-half acre. A fourth fire was contained at one-tenth of an acre in the McCoy Creek area, 12 miles southeast of Glendale.

All of these fires are located on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry's Grants Pass Unit.

Engine crews in ODF's Medford Unit are looking in the Halls Point area, west of Prospect, for a smoke that was reported this morning.

Thunderstorms are possible in southwest Oregon again today, primarily in the Cascades. Gusty winds up to 20 mph are forecasted, along with a chance of showers.


Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 

[NOTE THAT WITHIN THE COLESTIN DISTRICT, THE FOLLOWING LOWERED RESTRICTIONS DID NOT GO INTO EFFECT UNTIL OCTOBER 1ST. DUE TO THE CONTINUED VERY HIGH TEMPERATURES AND RELATIVE LACK OF PRECIPITATION LOCALLY, OUR DISTRICT'S FIRE DANGER REMAINED "EXTREME" WITH A 24-HOUR BAN ON RESTRICTED ACTIVITIES THROUGHOUT SEPTEMBER. UNTIL OCTOBER, ODF'S AUGUST 17TH BULLETIN REMAINED IN EFFECT INSTEAD:]

 

Wed., September 9th, 2009:  [NEW, LOWERED] "RESTRICTIONS ON POWER-DRIVEN EQUIPMENT START TOMORROW":

September 8, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Greg Alexander, Medford Unit Forester, (541) 664-3328
Rick Dryer, Grants Pass Unit Forester, (541) 474-3152

RESTRICTIONS ON POWER-DRIVEN EQUIPMENT START TOMORROW

Starting tomorrow, a noon shutdown is required for mowing and chain saw use on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level also returns to Level II in all SW and SK weather zones in ODF's Southwest Oregon District. These restrictions affect most of the state, private, county and Bureau of Land Management lands in Jackson and Josephine counties.

The fire danger level remains High (yellow).

Industrial Fire Precaution Level II (two) will be in effect in zones SW-1, SW-2, SW-3, SW-4 and SK-3, and IFPL III (three) will remain in effect in zones RR-1, RR-2 and RR-3. See www.swofire.oregon.gov for links to a zone map and a summary of IFPL regulations. [NOTE THAT AS OF OCTOBER 1ST, THE IFPL IS POSTED AT LEVEL I (ONE).]

Here is a summary of the public regulated use fire prevention restrictions that go into effect at 1:00 a.m. Wednesday:

* Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed in other locations.

* Motorized vehicles [including motorcycles and ATVs] are allowed only on improved roads.

* Chain saws may not be used between noon and 8:00 p.m. During other hours, chain saw users must have an ax, a shovel and an 8-oz or larger fire extinguisher at the job site, and a fire watch is required for one hour after the saw is shut down.

* Mowing of dead or dry grass with power-driven equipment is not allowed between noon and 8:00 p.m. This restriction does not include mowing of green lawns, or when equipment is used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.

* Cutting, grinding or welding metal is not allowed between noon and 8:00 p.m. These activities are allowed during other hours providing the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.

* Smoking while traveling [in the woods] is allowed only in vehicles on improved roads.

* All debris burning [or open burning], including debris burned in burn barrels, is prohibited.

* Fireworks use on forestlands is prohibited.

* Electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller's instructions for firesafe operation.

The fire prevention restrictions in the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial are unchanged. For further information about fire restrictions in all parts of the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, contact the Smullin Visitor Center located at the Rand National Historic Site at (541) 479-3735.

Information about fire season restrictions on ODF-protected lands is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov, and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152

###

Formatted copy attached [linked here] (Adobe Reader)

 

 

 

Tue Sep 08 2009 08:47 AM PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

"CAL FIRE: Black Fire’s start may be suspicious"

Hornbrook, Calif. - "The Black Fire is 100 percent contained, and fire investigators believe the start of the blaze was suspicious in nature, CAL FIRE Information Officer Suzanne Brady stated in a news release.

" The fire is still under investigation, and investigators ask anyone who might have seen any activity in the area, or who has any information that might help with the investigation, to contact the lead investigator at (530) 598-2620."

"For more fire information about the Black Incident, call the Fire Information Line at (530)?842-2266."

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x939037020/CAL-FIRE-Black-Fire-s-start-may-be-suspicious

 

 

[NOTE: THE FOLLOWING LOWERED RESTRICTIONS DID NOT APPLY WITHIN OUR DISTRICT, DUE TO CONTINUED HOT DRY WEATHER AND EXTREME FIRE DANGER; INSTEAD, THE RESTRICTIONS FROM ODF'S AUGUST 17TH BULLETIN REMAINED IN EFFECT.]

September 5, 2009
1:00 p.m.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Brian Ballou, fire prevention specialist, (541) 621-4156


FIRE DANGER DROPS TO HIGH ON MOST ODF-PROTECTED LANDS

Cool, damp weather has allowed the Oregon Department of Forestry's Southwest District to drop the fire danger level to "high" on most of the lands it protects in Jackson and Josephine counties. However, the fire danger level remains "extreme" in the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, between Grave Creek and Marial.

Mowers and chain saws may now be used without restriction. The welding, grinding and cutting of metal are also allowed again on ODF-protected forestlands.

Industrial Fire Precaution Level I (one) is in effect in zones SW-1, SW-2, SW-3, SW-4 and SK-3, and IFPL III (three) is in effect in zones RR-1, RR-2 and RR-3. See www.swofire.oregon.gov for links to a zone map and a summary of IFPL regulations.

Here are the public regulated use restrictions now in place:

* Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed in other locations.
* Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads.
* Smoking while traveling is allowed only in vehicles on improved roads.
* All debris burning, including debris burned in burn barrels, is prohibited.
* Fireworks use on forestlands is prohibited.
* Electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller's instructions for firesafe operation.

In the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, between Grave Creek and Marial, the following restrictions are in effect:

* Smoking is prohibited while traveling, except in boats on the water, and on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks that are free of vegetation.
* Open fires are prohibited, including campfires, charcoal fires, cooking fires and warming fires. However, portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks which are free of vegetation.
* A shovel and a one-gallon or larger bucket are required of all travelers.
* Fireworks are prohibited


For further information about fire restrictions in all parts of the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, contact the Smullin Visitor Center located at the Rand National Historic Site at (541) 479-3735 or your local Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest office.

Information about fire season restrictions on ODF-protected lands is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov, and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152

###


Formatted copy [NOT] attached (Adobe Reader)

 

 

Fri Sep 04 2009 11:19 AM PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

"Black Fire 90 percent contained"

Hornbrook, Calif. - "Crews have kept the Black Fire from growing and the blaze, which is burning in the Klamath River Country Estates area of Hornbrook, is now 90 percent contained, CAL FIRE Information Officer Suzanne Brady said Thursday night.

"...Fire investigators ask anyone who may have seen any suspicious activity in the area, or who have any information that might help them with the investigation, to contact the lead investigator at (530) 598-2620.

"... The blaze grew to 103 acres by Thursday..."

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x2056226205/Black-Fire-90-percent-contained

 

 

Thu Sep 03 2009 - 09:14 AM PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

"Fire spreads to 103 acres in Hornbrook"

Hornbrook, Calif. - "Residents of Klamath River Country Estates (KRCE) received a scare Wednesday afternoon when a fire broke out near homes in the Black Mountain area.

"An air attack crew, three helicopters, four air tankers, 10 engines and four hand crews were immediately called out to keep the fire from spreading, CAL FIRE Information Officer Suzanne Brady said.

"The fire started around 1:40 p.m. when the CAL FIRE Emergency Command Center received a call from the Soda Mountain lookout stating they saw smoke in the area of Black Mountain. The fire was burning in brush and grass.

"... No evacuations were ordered. The fire is currently 103 acres and is 51 percent contained. Crews will be working in the area today to get full containment, and the cause of the fire remains under investigation..."

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1574722310/Fire-spreads-to-103-acres-in-Hornbrook

 

 

September 2, 2009 1:42 pm

The Black Fire broke out 2 miles southeast of Hornbrook and grew to 103 acres by the time it was declared fully contained on September 4, 2009 at 9:30 pm. Cal Fire's Siskiyou Unit at Hornbrook responded to this incident, backed up with an engine and firefighters from Hilt:

Wed Sep 02 2009 - 02:50 PM PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

Crews battle blaze in Klamath River Country Estates area near Hornbrook

Hornbrook, Calif. - "A fire is burning in the Klamath River Country Estates (KRCE) area of Hornbrook, CAL FIRE Information Officer Suzi Brady reported.

"As of 2:45 p.m. Wednesday, no evacuations were in order, and battling the 7-acre blaze were an air attack crew, three helicopters, four air tankers, 10 engines and four hand crews..."

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1595416911/Crews-battle-blaze-in-Klamath-River-Country-Estates-area-near-Hornbrook

 

 

Wed Sep 02 2009 16:28:14 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

Fire burning near Fort Jones 85 percent contained

The Red Rock Fire is now 85 percent contained and the majority of heat left in the fire is on the west flank near Canyon Creek, a Klamath National Forest news release stated Tuesday.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1991355100/Fire-burning-near-Fort-Jones-85-percent-contained

 

 

Mon Aug 31 2009 16:50:43 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

Red Rock Fire 80 percent contained

The Red Rock Fire, burning in the Marble Mountain Wilderness, was 1,373 acres and 80 percent contained as of Sunday, a Klamath National Forest (KNF) news release reported.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1566717904/Red-Rock-Fire-80-percent-contained

 

 

Thu Aug 27 2009 17:29:17 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

Residents address burn concerns

The Red Rock Fire burning in the Marble Mountain Wilderness is still on track to be fully contained by this weekend, U.S.F.S. National Incident Management Organization (NIMO) Public Information Officer Robin Cole told the Daily News this morning.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x772323892/Residents-address-burn-concerns

 

 

Wed Aug 26 2009 16:36:38 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

Forest services discusses Red Rock Fire

Federal law prevents the U.S. Forest Service from scheduling prescribed burns during the optimum periods for doing so, concerned Scott Valley residents at a quickly-called Tuesday evening meeting were told.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x772320642/Forest-services-discusses-Red-Rock-Fire

 

 

Aug. 25, 2009
8:15 a.m.

Oregon Dept. of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District

Lone Mountain Fire Burns 48 Acres

ODF Grants Pass Unit firefighters chased a wildfire Monday afternoon through a tangle of trees, brush and houses in southern Josephine County. The 48-acre blaze was reported at 4:00 p.m. and was located less than a mile west of O’Brien, a community 8 miles south of Cave Junction. No homes burned in the fire, but a garage, a pump house and another outbuilding were destroyed.

A dog was killed, too.

A roadblock on Lone Mountain Rd. kept non-fire traffic out of the residential area until late into the night. The fire scene was packed with fire engines, water tenders, bulldozers and law enforcement vehicles. Structural fire engines from Jackson and Josephine counties, mobilized as a structural task force, protected the homes while engines and crews from the Oregon Department of Forestry and the U.S. Forest Service kept the wildfire in check.

Two helicopters and two airtankers dropped water and retardant on the fire during the daylight hours.

The cause of the fire is being investigated.

Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 

Mon Aug 24 2009 15:35:18 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA):

Prescribed Red Rock Burn increases haze, smoke in Scott and Shasta valleys

Residents of the Scott and Shasta valleys may notice increased haze and the smell of smoke due to the Red Rock prescribed burn in the Marble Mountains Wilderness, a Klamath National Forest (KNF) news release said.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1886178617/Prescribed-Red-Rock-Burn-increases-haze-smoke-in-Scott-and-Shasta-valleys

 

 

[1:00 AM Monday, August 17th, 2009:  Total Closure of Public Regulated Activities Begins:]

August 14, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Greg Alexander, ODF, (541) 664-3328
Rick Dryer, ODF, (541) 474-3152

HOT WEATHER AHEAD PROMPTS CLOSURE OF MOWING, CHAIN SAW USE IN JACKSON AND JOSEPHINE COUNTIES

Temperatures over 100 will hit southwest Oregon again next week, prompting the Oregon Department of Forestry to shut down public use of chain saws, mowers in dry grass, and other power-driven equipment on Monday.

Loggers and other forestland industrial operators will have fewer operating hours for certain types of equipment as the Industrial Fire Precaution Level rises to III (three).

The public-use fire danger level remains at "extreme" (red).

The following restrictions become effective 1:00 a.m. Monday, August 17, and affect state, private, county and Bureau of Land Management forestlands in Jackson and Josephine counties:

* Chain saw use will be prohibited.
* Mowing of dry grass, except for agricultural purposes such as cutting hay, will be prohibited.
* Cutting, grinding or welding metal will be prohibited.

The following public use restrictions remain in effect:

* All open burning of debris is prohibited. This includes burn barrels.
* Fireworks are prohibited.
* Camp fires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. This restriction includes charcoal-fired barbecues; however, stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed.
* Vehicles, including motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles, are not allowed on unimproved roads.
* Smoking is allowed only in a vehicle and only while on an improved road.
* Any electric fence controller in use shall contain a listing from a nationally recognized testing laboratory or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be operated in compliance with manufacturer instruction for firesafe operation.

Fire restrictions in the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River are unchanged.

Under Industrial Fire Precaution Level III, the following restrictions will apply as of Monday:

* Cable yarding will not be allowed. However, gravity operated-logging systems employing non-motorized carriages may operate until 1:00 p.m. and after 8:00 p.m. These systems must have all blocks and moving lines suspended 10 feet above the ground, except the line between the carriage and the chokers.
* Power saw use will not be allowed. However, power saws may be used until 1:00 p.m. and after 8:00 p.m. at loading sites and on tractor or skidder operations.

In addition, the following equipment and operations must shut down between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.:

* Tractor/skidder, feller-buncher, forwarder, or shovel logging operations where tractors, skidders or other equipment with a blade capable of constructing fireline are immediately available to quickly reach and effectively attack a fire start.
* Mechanized loading or hauling of any product or material.
* Blasting
* Welding or cutting of metal
* Any spark-emitting not specifically mentioned above.

For more information about the Oregon Department of Forestry's fire season regulations, contact the unit office in your area:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd., Central Point. Phone: (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Drive, Grants Pass. Phone: (541) 474-3152

Southwest Oregon District fire precaution level information is also posted on the World Wide Web at www.swofire.oregon.gov.

###

Formatted copy [of ODF's August 14, 2009 bulletin] attached [linked here] (PDF file format - requires Acrobat Reader)

 

 

Tue Aug 04 2009 16:04:00 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

"Lightning sparks 19 fires on KNF land"

"Nineteen new wildfires started on the Klamath National Forest (KNF) as a result of lightning strikes during severe thunderstorm activity over the weekend, a KNF news release announced Monday. The thunderstorms produced over 3,000 lightning strikes in Northern California, resulting in 300 fires."

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x154263453/Lightning-sparks-19-fires-on-KNF-land

 

 

August 2, 2009

12:10 p.m.

Oregon Dept. of Forestry

Southwest Oregon District

Saturday’s Lightning Storm Sparks 17 Small Fires

Lightning storms blanketed most of Jackson County and the eastern edge of Josephine County late Saturday, starting at least 17 small fires on ODF-protected lands. The largest fires are the 2.5-acre Kane Creek Fire and the 1-acre Panther Gulch Fire. The rest of the fires have been ½ -acre or smaller. All of the fires are either staffed by firefighters, contained or are being mopped up.

The Burnt Peak Fire, which started last Wednesday west of Lost Creek Lake, was contained Friday at 189 acres. Firefighters continue to patrol the burned area.

More lightning is forecast for today. A reconnaissance flight is in the air and is patrolling ODF-protected lands.

Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 

[Update:  Industrial Fire Precaution Level III (three) takes effect at 1:00 a.m. on Wednesday, July 29:]

July 28, 2009

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Greg Alexander, (541) 664-3328
Rick Dryer, (541) 474-3152

INDUSTRIAL FIRE PRECAUTION LEVEL 3 STARTS WEDNESDAY


Extreme fire danger on forestlands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry’s Southwest Oregon District has made it necessary to increase the fire prevention measures on industrial operations, such as logging sites and other commercial operations. Industrial Fire Precaution Level III (three) takes effect at 1:00 a.m. on Wednesday, July 29.

The following activities will be prohibited between the hours of 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.:

· Cable yarding, except gravity-operated logging systems employing non-motorized carriages which have all blocks and moving lines suspended 10 feet above the ground (does not apply to the line between the carriage and the chokers)
· Power saws, except at loading sites and on tractor or skidder operations
· Tractor/skidder, feller-buncher, forwarder, or shovel logging operations where tractors, skidders or other equipment with a blade capable of constructing fireline are immediately available to quickly reach and effectively attack a fire start
· Mechanized loading or hauling of any product or material
· Blasting
· Welding or cutting of metal
· Any spark-emitting operation not specifically mentioned

Additionally, all fires are prohibited, and commercial operators on forestlands are required to have fire suppression equipment on site and provide watchman service.

These regulations affect state, county, private and Bureau of Land Management lands in Jackson and Josephine counties in regulated use zones SW-1, SW-2, SW-3 and SW-4. Maps of these zones are available at the following ODF unit offices:

· Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd., Central Point. Phone: (541) 664-3328
· Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Drive, Grants Pass. Phone: (541) 474-3152

A zone map is also available online for viewing or printing at: www.oregon.gov/ODF/FIRE/Closures/maps/RegUse_FireWeather_8x11.pdf

Southwest Oregon District fire precaution level information is posted on the World Wide Web at www.swofire.oregon.gov.

###

[Formatted copy attached (linked here) (Adobe Reader)]

 

 

Mon Jul 27 2009 16:48:09 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

"Tennant fire fully contained; determined to be human-caused"

"The Tennant Fire burning 25 miles northeast of Weed is now 100 percent contained, a Klamath National Forest (KNF) news release stated."

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x639777651/Tennant-fire-fully-contained-determined-to-be-human-caused

 

 

[July 27th - Fire Danger Level Reaches Extreme:]

July 24, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Greg Alexander, Medford Unit Forester, (541) 664-3328
Rick Dryer, Grants Pass Unit Forester, (541) 474-3152

EXTREME FIRE DANGER ON ODF-PROTECTED LANDS

Very hot weather in southwestern Oregon makes it necessary to raise the fire danger level to Extreme (red) at 1:00 a.m. on Monday, July 27. This affects state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands that are in Jackson and Josephine counties and are protected by ODF's Southwest Oregon District.

The Industrial Fire Precaution Level will remain at level 2 (two).

Starting Monday, Mowing of dead or dry grass with power-driven equipment will not be allowed between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Previously, mowing was allowed until 1:00 p.m. This restriction does not include the mowing of green lawns, or when equipment is used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.

Chain saws may not be used between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Prior to this fire danger level change, chain saw use was allowed until 1:00 p.m. Chain saw users must have an ax, a shovel and an 8-oz or larger fire extinguisher at the job site, and a fire watch is required for one hour after the saw is shut down.

The cutting, grinding or welding of metal will not be allowed between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. These activities had also been allowed until 1:00 p.m. The work site must be cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is required at the job site.

Also, all open fires, including charcoal fires, will not be allowed in the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial. Previously, charcoal fires were allowed. Starting Monday, only portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels may be used on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks. These areas must be naturally free of vegetation.

Below is a summary of other fire restrictions that have been in effect since July 14 and will remain in effect:

* Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed in other locations.
* Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads.
* Smoking while traveling is allowed only in vehicles on improved roads.
* All debris burning, including debris burned in burn barrels, is prohibited.
* Fireworks use on forestlands is prohibited.
* Electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller's instructions for firesafe operation.

In the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial:

* Smoking is prohibited while traveling, except in boats on the water, and on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks that are free of vegetation.
* A shovel and a one-gallon or larger bucket are required of all travelers.
* Fireworks are prohibited

For further information about fire restrictions in all parts of the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, contact the Smullin Visitor Center located at the Rand National Historic Site at (541) 479-3735 or your local Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest office.

Information about fire season restrictions on ODF-protected lands is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov and swofire.blogspot.com, and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152


###

Formatted copy attached [linked here] (Acrobat Reader)

 

 

Thu Jul 23 2009 15:53:22 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

Tennant fire 90 percent contained

The Tennant fire has been reduced to 3,225 acres and is now 90 percent contained, a Klamath National Forest report stated Wednesday night.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1543598663/Tennant-fire-90-percent-contained

 

Wed Jul 22 2009 17:40:17 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

Tennant Fire containment expected Saturday

Homes are no longer threatened by the 4,168-acre Tennant Fire and the Union Pacific Railroad has been re-opened, a spokeswoman with the Klamath National Forest said this morning.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x592692005/Tennant-Fire-containment-expected-Saturday

 

Tue Jul 21 2009 16:58:21 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

Tennant Fire threatens 28 homes; no evacuations ordered

A fire approximately 25 miles northeast of Weed in the Mt. Hebron area that started Sunday has grown to over 4,000 acres and threatens 28 homes spread between Tennant and Highway 97, CAL FIRE spokeswoman Suzanne Brady said this morning.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x931241915/The-blaze-threatens-28-homes-no-evacuations-ordered

 

Mon Jul 20 2009 17:51:21 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

UPDATED: Highway 97 re-opened, Tennant fire still burning

A fire in the Mt. Hebron area caused the temporary closure of Highway 97 earlier today, but the highway has been re-opened to traffic.

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x931240440/Wildfire-forces-closure-of-Highway-97

 

 

[Update - July 20th - IFPL Rises to Level II: ]

July 20, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Greg Alexander, (541) 664-3328
Rick Dryer, (541) 474-3152

INDUSTRIAL FIRE PRECAUTION LEVEL RISES ON ODF-PROTECTED LANDS IN JACKSON AND JOSEPHINE COUNTIES

Increased fire danger on forestlands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry's Southwest Oregon District has made it necessary to increase the fire prevention measures on industrial operations, such as logging sites and other commercial operations.

Industrial Fire Precaution Level II (two) takes effect at 1:00 a.m. on Tuesday, July 21, and prohibits the following activities:

-- The use of fire in any form
-- The use of power saws, except at loading sites, between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
-- The use of cable yarders between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
-- Blasting between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
-- Welding or cutting of metal between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.

Additionally, commercial operators on forestlands are required to have fire suppression equipment on site and provide watchman service.

These regulations affect all state, county, private and Bureau of Land Management lands in Jackson and Josephine counties.

For more information about the Oregon Department of Forestry's fire season regulations, contact the unit office in your area:

-- Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd., Central Point. Phone: (541) 664-3328
-- Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Drive, Grants Pass. Phone: (541) 474-3152

Southwest Oregon District fire precaution level information is also posted on the World Wide Web at www.swofire.oregon.gov.

###

Formatted copy attached [linked here] (Adobe Reader)

 

 

[July 14th - Fire Danger Level Climbs to High:]

July 13, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Greg Alexander, Medford Unit Forester, (541) 664-3328
Rick Dryer, Grants Pass Unit Forester, (541) 474-3152


FIRE DANGER LEVEL CLIMBS TO HIGH TOMORROW

The fire danger level on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected lands in Jackson and Josephine counties climbs to High tomorrow. Among the restrictions that go into place on Tuesday, mowing, chain saw use and other machinery-related activities are curtailed during the afternoon hours. Campfires will be restricted to designated campgrounds, and vehicles will be allowed only on improved roads.

The fire danger level will be raised to High (yellow) at 1:00 a.m. Tuesday. This affects the 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands protected by ODF's Southwest Oregon District. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level will remain at level 1 (one).

A hot week lies ahead and already-cured fuels, such as grass and weeds, are igniting easily and burning more aggressively, necessitating increased restrictions on common fire-causing activities.

So far this year, Southwest Oregon District firefighters have responded to 87 fires that burned a total of 68.4 acres. The largest fire to date was a series of vehicle-caused fires that burned 6 acres along the Caves Highway on June 24. Thirty-two of the fires this year were caused by lightning.

Here is a summary of fire prevention restrictions that go into effect tomorrow:

* Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed in other locations.
* Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads.
* Chain saws may not be used between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. During other hours, chain saw users must have an ax, a shovel and an 8-oz or larger fire extinguisher at the job site, and a fire watch is required for one hour after the saw is shut down.
* Mowing of dead or dry grass with power-driven equipment is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. This restriction does not include mowing of green lawns, or when equipment is used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.
* Cutting, grinding or welding metal is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. These activities are allowed during other hours providing the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.
* Smoking while traveling is allowed only in vehicles on improved roads.
* All debris burning, including debris burned in burn barrels, is prohibited.
* Fireworks use on forestlands is prohibited.
* Electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller's instructions for firesafe operation.

In addition, the following restrictions become effective tomorrow in the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial:

* Smoking is prohibited while traveling, except in boats on the water, and on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks that are free of vegetation.
* Open fires are prohibited, including campfires, cooking fires and warming fires. However, portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels, and charcoal fires for cooking and built in raised fire pans, are allowed on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks which are free of vegetation. Ashes must be hauled out.
* A shovel and a one-gallon or larger bucket are required of all travelers.
* Fireworks are prohibited

For further information about fire restrictions in all parts of the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, contact the Smullin Visitor Center located at the Rand National Historic Site at (541) 479-3735 or your local Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest office.

Information about fire season restrictions on ODF-protected lands is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov and swofire.blogspot.com, and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152

###

Formatted copy attached [linked here] (Adobe Reader)

 

 

July 13, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Greg Alexander, Medford Unit Forester, (541) 664-3328
Rick Dryer, Grants Pass Unit Forester, (541) 474-3152


FIRE DANGER LEVEL CLIMBS TO HIGH TOMORROW

The fire danger level on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected lands in Jackson and Josephine counties climbs to High tomorrow. Among the restrictions that go into place on Tuesday, mowing, chain saw use and other machinery-related activities are curtailed during the afternoon hours. Campfires will be restricted to designated campgrounds, and vehicles will be allowed only on improved roads.

The fire danger level will be raised to High (yellow) at 1:00 a.m. Tuesday. This affects the 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands protected by ODF's Southwest Oregon District. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level will remain at level 1 (one).

A hot week lies ahead and already-cured fuels, such as grass and weeds, are igniting easily and burning more aggressively, necessitating increased restrictions on common fire-causing activities.

So far this year, Southwest Oregon District firefighters have responded to 87 fires that burned a total of 68.4 acres. The largest fire to date was a series of vehicle-caused fires that burned 6 acres along the Caves Highway on June 24. Thirty-two of the fires this year were caused by lightning.

Here is a summary of fire prevention restrictions that go into effect tomorrow:

* Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed in other locations.
* Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads.
* Chain saws may not be used between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. During other hours, chain saw users must have an ax, a shovel and an 8-oz or larger fire extinguisher at the job site, and a fire watch is required for one hour after the saw is shut down.
* Mowing of dead or dry grass with power-driven equipment is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. This restriction does not include mowing of green lawns, or when equipment is used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.
* Cutting, grinding or welding metal is not allowed between 1:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. These activities are allowed during other hours providing the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site.
* Smoking while traveling is allowed only in vehicles on improved roads.
* All debris burning, including debris burned in burn barrels, is prohibited.
* Fireworks use on forestlands is prohibited.
* Electric fence controllers must be approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., or be certified by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, and be installed and used in compliance with the fence controller's instructions for firesafe operation.

In addition, the following restrictions become effective tomorrow in the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial:

* Smoking is prohibited while traveling, except in boats on the water, and on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks that are free of vegetation.
* Open fires are prohibited, including campfires, cooking fires and warming fires. However, portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels, and charcoal fires for cooking and built in raised fire pans, are allowed on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks which are free of vegetation. Ashes must be hauled out.
* A shovel and a one-gallon or larger bucket are required of all travelers.
* Fireworks are prohibited

For further information about fire restrictions in all parts of the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, contact the Smullin Visitor Center located at the Rand National Historic Site at (541) 479-3735 or your local Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest office.

Information about fire season restrictions on ODF-protected lands is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov and swofire.blogspot.com, and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152

###

Formatted copy attached [linked here] (Adobe Reader)

 

 

Tue Jul 07 2009 16:31:02 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

Multiple fires burning on Klamath National Forest land

Twenty-four fires are burning on Klamath National Forest land, and most of them were started by lightning late last week, CAL FIRE spokeswoman Suzanne Brady said.

http://siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x488828476/Multiple-fires-burning-on-Klamath-National-Forest-land

 

 

June 24, 2009 5:05 p.m.

[From the] Oregon Department of Forestry Southwest Oregon District

FLURRY OF FIRES BRIEFLY CLOSES CAVES HIGHWAY

A series of five small wildfires in southern Josephine County this afternoon kept engine crews hopping. The fires were reported at 2:48 p.m. and were located between the 3100 and 3200 blocks of Caves Highway. The fires ranged in size from ¼ acre to 5 acres. At one point, the largest of the fires crossed the highway twice, necessitating a brief closure of the road.

All of the fires now have firelines around them and are in the mop-up stage.

Four engines and a dozer from ODF’s Grants Pass Unit responded to the fires, along with engines from the U.S. Forest Service, Illinois Valley Fire District, Rural Metro Fire Department and Grants Pass Dept. of Public Safety. A structural protection task force was put on alert, but was not mobilized.

The fires, pushed by wind gusts up to 15 mph, burned primarily in grass and threatened barns and other structures.

A sixth fire in the same general area, S. Kerby Ave., was reported at 2:23 p.m. and burned ½ acre.

The cause of the fires is under investigation.


Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 

Wed Jun 24 2009 16:33:09 GMT-0700 PDT - Siskiyou Daily News (Yreka, CA)

Fire hits near Seiad

Fire season is officially under way in Siskiyou County, as firefighters continue to fight a wildfire that began Tuesday in the Seiad Valley area.

http://siskiyoudaily.com/archive/x1662365973/Fire-hits-near-Seiad

 

 

Thurs. June 18th, 2009:

Fire Season locally begins Friday: Open burning's banned; barrels are OK till June 30, by Paul Fattig in The Mail Tribune (Medford, OR), page 3C-Local:

excerpt:

"The decision to begin the annual fire restrictions was made after the ODF consulted with local fire district officials as well as those from the BLM and the U.S. Forest Service, said Brian Ballou, spokesman for the ODF's Southwest Oregon District.

" 'One of the factors was that the fire behavior analyst who has been watching the fuel moisture informed us the flammable fuel has continued to dry out irrespective of the volume of rain we've had this spring,' Ballou said."

go to source article or point browser to:
http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20090618/NEWS/906180332

 

 

[The Oregon Department of Forestry declared the start of the 2009 Fire Season this last week. It began at midnight on Friday, June 19th:]

June 17, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOUTHWEST OREGON NEWS MEDIA

OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FORESTRY
SOUTHWEST OREGON DISTRICT
5286 Table Rock RD
Central Point, OR 97502

Contact: Brian Ballou, (541) 665-0662 or 621-4156

FIRE SEASON BEGINS FRIDAY ON ODF-PROTECTED LANDS IN JACKSON AND JOSEPHINE COUNTIES

Fire season on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry in Jackson and Josephine counties begins Friday, June 19. The fire danger level will be "moderate" (blue) and the Industrial Fire Precaution Level will be 1 (one). State of Oregon fire season regulations apply to 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands in both counties.

Starting Friday, the open burning of debris will no longer be allowed. This includes debris piles, ditch burning and any form of backyard burning. Burn barrels, however, will be allowed until June 30, but only with a permit from ODF and a permit from the local structural fire protection district (if required). To obtain an ODF burn barrel permit, visit the Southwest Oregon District's unit offices in Medford and Grants Pass.

Fireworks use on ODF-protected forestlands will also be prohibited.

In the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, between Grave Creek and Marial, the following additional restrictions will be in effect:

* Smoking will be prohibited while traveling, except in boats on the water, and on vegetation-free sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks.
* Open fires will be prohibited, including campfires, charcoal fires, cooking fires and warming fires. However, campfires built in fire pans or on fire blankets will be allowed on vegetation-free sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks. All ashes and charcoal must be carried out.
* Travelers will be required to have a shovel and a one-gallon or larger bucket.

For information about fire restrictions in all parts of the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River, contact the Smullin Visitor Center located at the Rand National Historic Site at (541) 479-3735 or your local Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest office.

Under IFPL 1, commercial operations, such as timber harvesting, conducted on forestlands will be required to have fire suppression equipment on the job site at all times, and a watchman must be provided.

Information about fire season restrictions is available online at www.swofire.oregon.gov <http://www.swofire.oregon.gov/> and swofire.blogspot.com, and at ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

* Medford Unit, 5286 Table Rock Rd.; (541) 664-3328
* Grants Pass Unit, 5375 Monument Dr.; (541) 474-3152

###

Formatted copy attached (Acrobat Reader) [linked directly below:]

 

 

The Oregon Dept. of Forestry issued an update bulletin this morning following the weather system yesterday (Sunday, May 31st):

June 1, 2009

11:00 a.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
5286 Table Rock Rd
Central Point, OR

More Than 20 Fires Found From Weekend Storms

Another thunderstorm late Sunday may have sparked new fires on ODF-protected lands in Jackson County. As of this morning, at least 20 fires have been found since the series of storms began on Saturday. Reports of smoke are being received by the Medford Unit's dispatch office several times an hour. A reconnaissance flight is in the air to search for new smokes and to confirm reported fires.

The largest fire from the weekend's storm was a 5-acre fire in the Bishop Creek area, southeast of Ruch. A fire yesterday near the Jacksonville Reservoir Road burned nearly an acre of brush before being contained around 10:00 p.m.

Most of the fires caused by the lightning storms have each burned less than a half-acre. In many cases, the fires have been confined to a single tree or have burned small patches of brush.

The weather forecast is calling for more wet thunderstorms today.

Fire updates are being posted online at http://swofire.blogspot.com/ <http://swofire.blogspot.com/>

You can also sign up for Twitter alerts about ODF fires at http://twitter.com/swofire


Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 

ODF issued the following bulletin the morning after the thunderstorms of the previous evening (Saturday, May 30th):

May 31, 2009
7:15 a.m.

Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
5286 Table Rock Rd
Central Point, OR

FIVE FIRES FOUND IN STORM'S WAKE

Fire-fighting crews from ODF's Medford Unit found five fires during yesterday's thunderstorms. The largest is the 5-acre Bishop Creek #1 Fire (originally estimated to be 10 acres), located 1.5 miles SE of Ruch. A second fire in the same drainage burned one-quarter acre of forestland, and in the nearby Sterling Creek area another fire burned one-half of an acre.

A couple miles south of Gold Hill, on a ridge between the Kane Creek and Galls Creek drainages, a fire burned three-fourths of an acre.

The fifth fire found yesterday was on Johns Peak, and it burned one-half an acre.

The incident commander on the Bishop Creek #1 Fire reported this morning that the fire-fighting crew had encircled the burned area with fire line and hoses and was mopping up hot spots. The other four fires are also being mopped up.

Five engines from ODF's Grants Pass Unit assisted with yesterday's hunt for lightning-caused fires, which continued well into the night. Many, many reports of smoke and sightings of fire were called in by people from all corners of Jackson County. A reconnaissance flight scheduled to begin at 9:00 a.m. today will search for additional fires.

Fire updates are being posted online at http://swofire.blogspot.com/

Brian Ballou
Fire Prevention Specialist
Oregon Department of Forestry
Southwest Oregon District
Office: (541) 665-0662
bballou@odf.state.or.us

 

 


Fire-related news and summaries for previous years are available from

our Fire Season News Archives page.