Much of today’s fire suppression focus on the Stouts Creek Fire is on connecting fire lines and doing burnout operations along the east and south flanks. Crews on the fire’s west and north flanks are running hose lays and doing mop-up along the fire’s edge. Some burnout operations are also being conducted along the west side.
The fire has grown to 17,500 acres. Most of the increased size is due to fireline relocation and burnout operations. The fire is 15 percent contained.
Helicopters will be seen much of the day over the Stouts Creek Fire because the smoke has cleared out allowing the aircraft to fly earlier than normal. Seven helicopters are assigned to the incident for fire suppression support. Another helicopter is on standby to respond to medical emergencies. Air tankers are available on an as-needed basis.
The evacuation levels in the Upper Cow Creek Road area, Milo and Drew remained at Level 2 (Set). A small area along the Tiller-Trail Highway north of Trail in Jackson County is under a Level 1 (Ready) evacuation alert.
A task force of structural fire protection engines is in place in the Upper Cow Creek Road area and another task force is stationed in the Drew area. Residences and other structures have been evaluated for defensible space. Vegetation reduction has been completed in many areas to make homes more defensible against fire. Portable water ponds, pumps, hoses and sprinklers have been stationed in several areas among the homes.
Smoke continues to drift from the fire area and will be stronger when burnout operations are taking place. Most of the smoke will drift in a south/southeast direction from the fire. For updates on smoke density and public health advisories, see www.oregonsmoke.blogspot.com.