Tuesday, June 28, 2016

High Fire Danger Takes Effect Thursday on ODF-Protected Lands in SW Oregon

Continued hot and dry weather has made it necessary for the Oregon Department of Forestry to raise the fire danger level to “high” (yellow) on Thursday, June 30. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level will remain at level 1 (one).

These regulations listed below affect 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management lands in Jackson and Josephine counties that are protected by ODF’s Southwest Oregon District.

Fire prevention regulations currently in effect, and which will remain in effect, include:

  • No debris burning, including piles and debris burned in burn barrels;
  • No fireworks use on forestlands;
  • Exploding targets and tracer ammunition, or any bullet with a pyrotechnic charge in its base, are prohibited;
  • No sky lanterns may be used in wildland and forestland areas.

Starting Thursday at 12:01 a.m., the following regulations will go into effect:

  • Campfires will be allowed only in designated campgrounds. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels may be used in other locations;
  • Motorized vehicles will be allowed only on improved roads;
  • Smoking while traveling will be allowed only in enclosed vehicles on improved roads;
  • Possession of the following firefighting equipment is required while traveling, except on state highways, county roads and driveways: one shovel and one gallon of water or one 2½ pound or larger fire extinguisher. All-terrain vehicles and motorcycles must be equipped with one 2½ pound or larger fire extinguisher;
  • Chain saws may not be used between 10:00 a.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 one-hour fire watch is required after the saw is shut down;
  • Mowing of dead or dry grass with power-driven equipment will not be allowed between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. This restriction does not include mowing of green lawns, or equipment used for the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops;
  • The cutting, grinding or welding of metal will not be allowed between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. These activities will be allowed during other hours provided the work site is cleared of potentially flammable vegetation and other materials, and a water supply is at the job site;
  • 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 fire safe operation.

For more information about the Oregon Department of Forestry’s public regulated use regulations, please call or visit the Southwest Oregon District unit office nearest to you:

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

High Fire Danger Regulations Take Effect Thursday in Wild & Scenic Section of Rogue River

The fire danger level will be “high” (yellow) in the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial starting 12:01 a.m. Thursday, June 30. The Wild and Scenic section of the river between Grave Creek and Marial is managed by the Bureau of Land Management and protected from fire by the Oregon Department of Forestry’s Southwest Oregon District.

The following fire prevention restrictions take effect Thursday:

  • Smoking will be 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.
  • All travelers will be required to carry one shovel and a one-gallon or larger bucket.
  • The use of fireworks will be prohibited.
  • Campfires, including cooking fires and warming fires,will be prohibited. However, charcoal fires for cooking and built in raised fire pans will be allowed on sand or gravel bars that lie between water and high water marks that are free of vegetation. Ashes must be hauled out. Portable cooking stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels may also be used.

For further information about fire restrictions in the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial, contact:

  • The Oregon Department of Forestry, Grants Pass Unit, (541) 474-3152;
  • The Smullin Visitor Center located at the Rand National Historic Site at (541) 479-3735.

Monday, June 27, 2016

New Pocketcard and Stats Now Available

With the return of the warm and dry weather we have seen a return of fire danger too. ERC values and BI have rebounded back to normal and will continue to rise as the week goes on. Hot dry weather will persist over the area for the remainder of the forecast period. For the latest pockecard and stats please visit the SWOFireData

Thursday, June 23, 2016

ODF Live Fire Training

Fire crews from the Oregon Department of Forestry and Jackson County Fire District 3 participated in live fire training today. The training was at the intersection of Truax and Newland roads in Central Point.
This type of training allows firefighting crews to closely mimic a brush fire in a controlled environment that the fire training staff monitors. Firefighters worked on mobile attack, pump-and-roll tactics, burnout operations, and fire ground communications to refresh skills needed for the upcoming fire season.
Although the day started out slow due to the early morning humidity, it quickly turned into great conditions for the training. This video is a look at some of the collaborative work fire crews did today.

Monday, June 20, 2016

June 20 Pocketcard and Stat Update

With the recent rain ERC values have relaxed nicely from early season highs. Fire danger is back to normal and with the hot dry weather in the forecast we can expect fire danger to respond accordingly. For the latest pocketcard and stat sheet please visit SWOFireData.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

June 7 Lightning Map Update

There was widespread lightning last night effecting most of eastern Jackson County. Most of the lightning did come with scattered rain. There will be patrols and flights scheduled throughout the day. Please visit SWO Fire Data for the latest maps. 

Monday, June 6, 2016

Storm Sparks Fires in NE Jackson County

ODF Medford Unit engine crews found two lightning-caused fires this evening in northeast Jackson County. One fire is near Vine Maple Creek, 6 miles south of Prospect. The other fire is in the Sugar Pine Flat area, 4 miles northwest of Butte Falls. Both fires have firefighters on scene.

The Sugar Pine Flat Fire is estimated at 0.25 acre. The one near Vine Maple Creek is confined to a tree. 

Other engine crews are looking through the Cobleigh Rd. and the Elk Creek Rd. areas where people have reported seeing small columns of smoke, however no other fires have been found.

Earlier today, ODF Grants Pass Unit engine crews assisted with extinguishing a 0.50-acre fire near the community of Provolt. The cause of that fire under investigation.