Wednesday, August 1, 2018


South Valley Fire

[Dufur, Ore.] The South Valley Fire was reported Wednesday afternoon around 1:30 p.m., burning in ponderosa pine, oak, and wheat, southwest of Dufur, Oregon on Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) protected lands.  Dry fuels and steady winds have contributed to the fire’s spread.   It is currently estimated at 10,000 acres.  The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Governor Kate Brown has invoked the Conflagration Act in response to the fire’s threat to homes and infrastructure. Tonight Oregon State Fire Marshal (OSFM) mobilized resources to the fire and is in Unified Command with ODF.  Tonight firefighters will take advantage of increased humidity and reduced wind to engage the fire and build fireline while the fire behavior is moderated.      
Evacuation information for the fire can be found on the Wasco County Sheriff’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/WascoCountySheriff/
The fire originated approximately five miles southwest of Dufur, and spread to the southeast, crossing Highway 197 south of Dufur. Potential spread of the fire overnight toward the Deschutes River prompted the Bureau of Land Management to implement a Level 3 evacuation order in Segment 3 of the river corridor from Sandy Beach to Mack’s Canyon.
Resources on the fire today included large air tankers, very large air tankers, Washington Department of Natural Resources FireBoss scoopers, ODF Single Engine Air Tankers (SEATs), several helicopters, ground crews and engines from ODF and the U.S. Forest Service, additional engines from Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue and other local rural fire departments, and contract dozers.  Approximately 150 fire personnel have engaged in the fire this afternoon and evening, with more resources arriving tonight with OSFM.  Additional resources have been ordered and will arrive tomorrow.  Aerial resources will be supporting ground suppression activities Thursday morning.
Year-to-date the District has responded to 48 human caused fires, burning nearly 350 acres.  This is nine more than the ten-year average for this time period.  Fuel conditions throughout the region continue to be very dry with the potential for rapid fire growth from every spark.  Regulated Closure is in effect for ODF’s Central Oregon District.  Specific restrictions can be found at www.ODFcentraloregon.com.   

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