Friday, September 6, 2013

Few Fires Found From Thursday's Thunderstorms

The Oregon Dept. of Forestry's Medford Unit found four small fires (less than a tenth of an acre) following Thursday's thunderstorms. No lightning-caused fires have been found on ODF's Grants Pass Unit.

A reconnaissance flight is scheduled for later today, after the clouds lift from the ridgetops, to search for sleepers.

Rain fell across most of both Jackson and Josephine counties during the storms, but rainfall amounts varied widely.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Josephine County Forestland-Urban Interface Classification Committee Meets Sept. 13

The Josephine County Forestland-Urban Interface Classification Committee meets Friday, Sept. 13, 1:00 p.m., at Grants Pass Fire-Rescue, Parkway Station, 800 East Park St., Grants Pass. The committee will continue its review of forestland-urban interface areas in Josephine County. Once the committee’s review is complete, it will present its proposed findings at a public hearing.

The committee focuses on developed urban and suburban lands that are in areas where potentially destructive wildfires are likely to occur, and where there is a structural density of at least four dwellings per 40 acres. Owners of these lands are required to reduce potentially flammable vegetation around structures and along driveways.

The forestland-urban interface identification and classification process is described in the Oregon Forestland-Urban Interface Fire Protection Act, ORS 477.015-477.061.

To ensure the broadest range of services to individuals with disabilities, persons requiring special arrangements should call (541) 664-3328 at least two working days in advance.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Bear Camp Road Reopened

[ Updated 11:45 a.m. ]

Bear Camp Road (BLM # 34-8-36 and Forest Service #23) reopened yesterday morning, but all BLM roads off the Bear Camp Road remain closed. Should fire activity on the Big Windy Complex increase in the future, there is the possibility the closure will be implemented again.

The following roads will remain closed until further notice:
  • Grave Creek to Marial Back Country Byway, which includesMt. Reuben Road (34-8-1 Road), 32-8-31 Road, a portion of the 32-8-9.2 Road, and the Marial Access Road (32-9-14.2).
  • Burnt Ridge Road, Forest Service Road 2308, is closed from the junction with Forest Road 23 to the junction with Forest Road 33.
Please use caution when driving on Bear Camp Road. Heavy equipment and other fire-related traffic is using the road and drivers are asked to drive slowly.

Camping is allowed on the north side of the Rogue River from Montgomery Creek to Quail Creek. Camping remains closed on the south side of the river in this same area.

The Big Windy Complex has burned 24,253 acres and is 87 percent contained. Management of the complex has been returned to the Oregon Dept. of Forestry's Southwest Oregon District.

Nearly 90 firefighters are assigned to the fire today, and they have 10 engines, three water tenders and two bulldozers available for use as necessary.

A separate contingent of workers is assigned to the Big Windy Complex to continue burned-area rehabilitation projects. Seven bulldozers, two excavators and other heavy equipment, such as log loaders, are working in the fire area.

Douglas Complex Contained

The Douglas Forest ProtectiveAssociation declared the Douglas Complex Fires 100 percent contained yesterday, Sept. 3.  The Type 3 Incident Command Team, led by DFPA, will remain in place to continue mop up operations, work on rehab projects, and patrol the fire lines.  One hundred and sixty-two firefighters remain assigned to the incident to complete these objectives. 
Despite the incident being fully contained, smoke from the interior of the fire will be visible until fall rains return and extinguish them.

The public is reminded that the Bureau of Land Management road closures around the Douglas Complex Fires remain in effect until September 10th.  At that time, the BLM will reassess the road closures and make adjustments as needed.  The road closures are in effect to provide safety to both firefighters and the general public while work continues in the area.