Fire Season Regulations

The public regulated use fire danger level is "Extreme" on lands protected by the Oregon Dept. of Forestry's Southwest Oregon District. The Industrial Fire Precaution Level is at Level 3 (three).
 
The district protects 1.8 million acres of state, private, county, city and Bureau of Land Management forestlands in Jackson and Josephine counties.
 
The Public Regulated Use restrictions include:
  • No debris burning in piles or in burn barrels.
  • No fireworks in forests or other wildland areas. Fireworks are also prohibited on all federal lands, and state and county campgrounds.
  • Exploding targets and tracer ammunition may not be used in forests or other wildland areas.
  • Campfires are allowed only in designated campgrounds. In other locations, portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuels are allowed.
  • Smoking while traveling is allowed only inside of an enclosed vehicle.
  • Motorized vehicles are allowed only on improved roads.
  • Chain saw use is not allowed.
  • Mowing of dead or dry grass is not allowed. This restriction does not apply to the mowing of green lawns, or the commercial culture and harvest of agricultural crops.
  • The cutting, grinding or welding of metal are not allowed.
  • Any other spark-emitting machinery not specifically mentioned 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. Electric fence controllers must be installed and used in compliance with the manufacturer's instructions for fire-safe operation.
  • The use of sky lanterns on ODF-protected lands is prohibited.
In the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue River between Grave Creek and Marial, the following restrictions are in effect:
  • Open fires are prohibited, including campfires, charcoal fires, cooking fires and warming fires. Portable stoves using liquefied or bottled fuel are allowed when used on a sand or gravel bar between the water and the high water mark, and where there is no flammable vegetation.
  • Smoking is not allowed while traveling, except on sand or gravel bars between the river and the high water mark. Smoking areas must be free of flammable vegetation.
  • Travelers must carry a shovel and a bucket with a capacity of at least one gallon.
  • Fireworks are prohibited.
Under IFPL 3, the following regulations are in effect:
  •  Cable yarding is not 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 is not 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 fire line 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;
  • The use of fire in any form is prohibited;
  • Fire suppression tools and water must be on the job site at all times;
  • Watchman service must be provided at the job site.

For more information, contact the ODF Southwest Oregon District unit offices:

Medford Unit
5286 Table Rock Rd.
Central Point, OR 97502
(541) 664-3328
Fax: (541) 664-4340
 
5375 Monument Dr.
Grants Pass, OR 97526
(541) 474-3152
Fax: (541) 474-3158
Links to related information

Oregon Department of Forestry fire prevention regulations:

Weather conditions and forecasts:
To report a fire: Dial 911. Be prepared to tell the dispatcher who you are, where the fire is located, and how to contact you. Do not hang up until the dispatcher asks you to. For more information about emergency reporting, see the Emergency Communications of Southern Oregon website.
 
To ensure you'll know about an emergency in your area: Sign up for Citizen Alert, a Jackson County notification system which helps local officials to provide you with critical information quickly when a fire, flood, earthquake or other emergency occurs.
 
For wildfire prevention regulations on other southern Oregon state and private forestlands:

For information about wildfires in the Pacific Northwest: Northwest Interagency Coordination Center
 
For national wildfire information:

For information about local national forests:

11 comments:

  1. During high fire danger, ammunition with a steel core bullet (attracts a magnet) should also be prohibited. This type of bullet core can cause sparks if a rock or steel is hit.

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    1. Thank you for the warning.

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    2. It is not just steel core. Steel jacketed, copper jacketed and solid copper bullets have all been proven capable of starting a fire under the right conditions based on recent research conducted by the Forest Service at their Missoula Fire Laboratory. http://www.fs.fed.us/rm/pubs/rmrs_rp104.pdf
      Relatively rare, but statistically high enough odds that I cease all target shooting at my house in early May....

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  2. I can't believe that one is allowed to mow dead grass in a field where everything is bone dry at this time of year. We just had a fire nearby. The rules don't even stipulate a requirement of at least having a shovel and hose ready. Common sense should prevail but some either don't care or get it. All mowing of dried grass should be closed right after the 4Th of July.

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  3. I can't believe you are allowed to sell / shoot off fireworks in a wildfire zone!!!! That's just absurd.

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  4. Is this page updated daily? I am near the City of Rogue River and eagerly awaiting being able to get to the back edge of my place to take town the teasle before my neighbors form a lynching committee

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    Replies
    1. This page is updated whenever there are changes to the fire prevention regulations. The latest changes were posted Aug. 4.

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  5. We were told today by ODF that you may use gas powered equipment until 1pm as long as you stay for an hour afterwards to watch for fire.

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  6. Candy, in ODF's Southwest Oregon District, power equipment use isn't allowed right now on state, county, private and BLM lands in Jackson and Josephine counties. ODF's fire prevention regulations do not apply to most properties inside the city limits of Medford, Ashland and Grants Pass. Also, the power equipment restrictions don't apply to the use of a power mower on a green lawn, or to equipment used on a farm to harvest a crop.

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  7. Can a chainsaw be operated in a green area at a rural residence in a rural neighborhood? If not, are there any cases in which a homeowner can get special permission to do so?

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  8. Public chain saw use is completely shut down until some rain falls in southwest Oregon. You can request a waiver by calling the ODF nearest to you (Central Point, (541) 664-3328 or Grants Pass, (541) 474-3152). An ODF forest officer will visit your property and determine whether to issue a waiver.

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